The Stavros Niarchos Foundation Cultural Center—a crowning cultural achievement for the country of Greece—will open its doors to the public from June 23 to 26 with the event Metamorphosis: The SNFCC to the World. The four-day festival invites the public to explore the center’s 43-acre public park, tour the stunning 535,000 square foot building, and take part in a variety of cultural, culinary, educational, and athletic events—a small sampling of what the center will provide in the decades to come.
Thanks to the participation of more than 400 Greek and international artists, the family-friendly festival will let proud citizens take in countless events including live music from an array of international musicians, visual arts exhibitions, performances from the Athens Conservatory, appearances by chess grandmaster Garry Kasparov and project architect Renzo Piano, as well as the second annual SNFCC RUN—a 6K race at sunset from the Panathenaic Stadium to the Stavros Niarchos Center.
Theatre Projects has been a part of the SNFCC project team since 2007, assisting in the original masterplanning and programming and working with architect Renzo Piano as the iconic building took shape. Providing concept design, theatre planning and design, and theatre equipment design and specification, Theatre Projects helped shape the €596 million ($839 million) center, which will serve as the new home of the Greek National Opera and the National Library of Greece.
The 1,400-seat opera house features four balconies that draw the audience remarkably close to the performers, providing incredible intimacy for a venue of its size. With flexible staging, a forestage extension, demountable orchestra shell, and state-of-the art performance equipment, the opera house can accommodate the most technically advanced opera and is also versatile enough to host touring performances of ballet, musicals, classical and amplified music, and much more. Diverse, navigable, and spacious back of house spaces include music rehearsal rooms, scene and costume shops, staging areas, and dressing rooms.
The center also includes a 475-seat flexible theatre for contemporary music, dance, drama and lectures and a sizable educational component with academic and musical classrooms and a dance studio. The Greek National Opera will produce its first full-scale production in the new opera house later this year. For more information on the SNFCC, Metamorphosis, and future events, visit http://www.snfcc.org/default.aspx