Grand Salle Philharmonie de Paris © William Beaucardet Classical Journal / Editor's Desk

The Philharmonie de Paris has its first birthday.

One year ago, a new chapter for classical music opened in Paris, with the inauguration of the Philharmonie de Paris. Although construction of the concert hall was not quite completed when the doors opened on January 14th, 2015, audience and critics alike agreed that the project was a major success from the start. Guardian music critic Tom Service wrote: “I can’t remember a new hall sounding this good or this characterful at its opening, despite the fine-tuning that will no doubt happen over the coming weeks.”

French star architect Jean Nouvel designed an extraordinary new concert house to complete the cultural complex at the Parc de la Villette. A dynamic, metallic façade of jagged layered surfaces gives way to softer, organic forms within. Most importantly, the interior successfully unites acoustic brilliance with optimal sight-lines.

Philharmonie de Paris © Photo: Ateliers Jean Nouvel

Philharmonie de Paris © Photo: Ateliers Jean Nouvel


One year later, the Philharmonie can look back on extraordinary programming, including top international artists like Cecilia Bartoli, Rolando Villazón, Yo-Yo Ma, and Daniel Barenboim. Visiting conductors included Sir Simon Rattle, Gustavo Dudamel, Alan Gilbert, and Valery Gergiev.

With an extensive schedule of educational events, family concerts, and free performances, the Philharmonie de Paris aims to open the world of classical music to a broad audience. The location, outside of the exclusive city center, sends a welcoming signal to the population of the greater Paris area.

The First Year in Numbers:

  • 1,203,056 total visitors
  • 407,109 people attended paid concerts in the Grande Salle
  • 153,074 visitors to educational events for families and children
  • 75,000 people took advantage of free events

The Philharmonie de Paris in Numbers:

Grande Salle (Main Concert Hall):

  • 2,400 seats
  • 32 meters maximum distance between audience member and the conductor
  • 270 performances in the first season (January – June,  2015)
  • 6 ensembles in residence / associated ensembles (Orchestre de Paris, Choeur de l’Orchestre de Paris, Orchestre de Chambre de Paris, Ensemble Intercontemporain, Les Arts Florissants, Orchestre national d’île de France)
  • 1 panorama restaurant
  • 1 café
  • 6 bars
Credits:Grand Salle Philharmonie de Paris © William Beaucardet

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