Perth Concert Hall

Perth Concert Hall
©2022 Gazetteer for Scotland

Perth Concert Hall

A strikingly modern building hidden between Mill Street and the North Port in the N of Perth city centre, the Perth Concert Hall opened in 2005 and is by far the largest entertainment venue in Perth & Kinross. As well as concerts, theatrical and other cultural events the hall caters for national and international conferences, meetings and other civic events.

Built as a millennium project on the site of the once bustling Horsecross market, the design of the £17-million building arose from an international architectural competition, which was won by BDP-Glasgow in 1998. Archaeological investigations revealed this had been the site of the 12th century Perth Castle, an earth-and-timber structure which was washed away by floods in 1209. Construction of the Concert Hall began in 2003 and was completed in Summer 2005. HM Queen Elizabeth II attended the first performance in June of that year, three months before the hall opened to the public, and unveiled a plaque to commemorate her visit.

The 1200-seater Gannochy Auditorium lies at the heart of the building, which includes leading-edge audiovisual technology and through flexible seating can be extended to a capacity of 1600. A wood-panelled multi-purpose performance studio the Norie-Miller Studio is located on the ground floor. This can also serve as a meeting room and exhibition space, with a capacity of 150. Elsewhere in the building are a series of small meeting rooms are named after Perthshire rivers; namely Almond, Dochart, Earn, Tay, Tilt and Tummel. The glass-fronted foyer of the building provides exhibition and circulation space, together with a restaurant and café bar. A particular feature of this area is the bank of twenty-two video screens that provide differing moods of interactive lighting and also serve as multimedia displays.

The concert hall is run by Horsecross, a company which grew out of Perth Theatre and which is backed by Perth and Kinross Council. The building has won several awards including the Regeneration Award from the British Construction Industry (2006), an RICS Regional Award (2007) and the Building Services Award for Project of the Year in the same year.

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