Perth Concert Hall, Perth

May 11, 2011 Filed under: 2000s, Culture by Sanna Fisher-Payne Comments Off

Placed 12nd in the Placebook vote of favourite buildings by BDP
Perth Concert Hall's chief executive Jane Spiers says it delivers everything they ask of it, and Raymond Young, formerly of Architecture & Design Scotland, comments on how it has changed the city

Jane Spiers

A concert hall is architecture that has to work very hard to please. First it is a focal point for a city and must be welcoming yet impressive, outstanding, yet sensitive to its historic surrounding especially in Perth a city with an 800 year history. Inside it is a place for social gathering, for food, bars and busy foyers, yet it must also meet the rigorous demands for first class acoustic performance.

Perth concert Hall delivers it all, delighting audiences and performers alike with a stunning auditorium wrapped in a dazzling glass-fronted foyer and copper-topped dome with an elegant studio to boot.

As the managers of the building we ask a lot from it – presenting a busy year-round programme of concerts, comedy, dance, musicals, contemporary art, film, talks and arts workshops. We also hire out our spaces for conferences and events, to everyone from charities to national political parties, we have even housed a motor show.

The Concert hall’s clever flexible auditorium design with unique floor lift configuration allows the raked seating to be stowed and the floor level raised to provide a full flat floor which means that whatever the event we can provide the right hall set up. Designed with a naturally excellent acoustic for orchestral music, the technical wizardry of retractable acoustic banners and powerful electro-acoustic systems means that speakers, pianists, rock bands, comics and our audiences have all commented on the great sound

Perth Concert Hall is the only new-build, full scale concert hall built in Scotland since 1990. It was completed on time, on budget, the city is very proud of it and as our first minister recently commented, it really is a “jewel in the crown of Perthshire.

Raymond Young

Very quickly this has become a favourite place in Perth to meet friends, have some food/drink and to enjoy music and other performances.

It is a very flexible space – one of the very few halls where it can be transformed quickly into a variety of arrangements from a traditional hall to a conference hall to a dance venue. The acoustics suit everything from heavy metal to cello sonatas. It has become a clear favourite of many international classical musicians (especially pianists) – Bryn Terfel wanted to take it back to Wales!

It has transformed the musical life of the City of Perth and helped this rather conservative city warm to modern architecture.


Chief Executive Jane Spiers has operated Perth Concert for over five years and finds it jewel in the crown of Perthshire
Raymond Young is the former chairman of Architecture and Design Scotland, and lives close by to Perth