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Palau de la Música: Where Music and Culture Come to Life in Barcelona

Looking for something different to do upon your visit to the Catalan capital? The Palau de la Musica Concert Hall offers a once in a lifetime experience. 

 

The Palau de la Música Catalana was built between 1905 and 1908 by the modernist architect Lluís Domènech i Montaner as the headquarters of the Orfeó Català. The building is located in the Sant Pere district, one of the most beautiful and emblematic areas of Barcelona.

The Palau de la Música Catalana is a prime example of Catalan Art Nouveau, and is the only concert hall declared a World Heritage Site by UNESCO. Today, it’s become an essential meeting point in the cultural and social life of Catalonia. 

What’s more, it’s a symbolic and sentimental heritage of an entire people who identify with its history. The modernist building is articulated around a central metal structure covered in glass, which, when it receives natural light, turns the most significant building of Domènech i Montaner’s work into a magical music box where all the applied arts are combined: sculpture, mosaic, stained glass and wrought iron. 

To properly experience this masterpiece, the Palau de la Música Catalana offers guided tours, an unmissable opportunity to get to know every corner of this modernist jewel.

 

Palau de la Música Catalana

 

The Palau de la Música Catalana is located in Barcelona’s Ribera neighbourhood. Designed by the Catalan architect Lluís Domenech i Montaner, it’s by far one of the most representative buildings of Catalan modernism. Built between 1905 and 1908, the building houses the headquarters of the Catalan Choral Society (Orfeó Català), founded by Lluís Millet and Amadeo Vives in 1891.

Its construction was commissioned by the Orfeó Català itself to become its headquarters, and it was declared a National Monument in 1971.

On 9 February 1908, it was inaugurated as an auditorium for orchestral and instrumental music concerts, although over the years numerous cultural, political and theatrical events have taken place on its stage.

Today, and due to its excellent acoustics, many of the best performers and conductors of the international scene, from Richard Strauss to Daniel Bareinboim, as well as Stravinski, Arthur Rubeinstein, Pau Casals and Frederic Mompou, continue to perform here.)

Built on the cloister of the convent of San Francisco, it has two very clear elements that show the typology and technological innovation of the project.

On the one hand, its concert hall, built in the courtyard in the solar dividing wall with the church so that the concert hall would maintain the same layout and the entrance of light as the original construction.

On the other hand, the location of the auditorium on the first floor, taking advantage of the different flights of stairs for easy access, leaving the ground floor for the offices of the Orfeó Català.

On its façade, are we can find countless sculptures related to the world of music, which blend with modernist and baroque architecture. Trencadís and glass can be found throughout the building.

Inside, the concert hall is dominated by the large skylight designed by Antonio Rigalt i Blanch, which dominates the top of the hall like a large sun in the shape of an inverted sphere, with golden crystals in the centre, other softer blue ones around it and white ones representing female busts.

 

A Concert Hall Unlike Any Other

Undoubtedly one of the most unique in the world, the concert hall has for over a hundred years been a prestigious stage of Barcelona’s national and international concert life. To date, it has hosted world premieres and is a benchmark for symphonic and choral music in the country. 

Presided over by the organ on the stage and with a central skylight representing the sun, the hall enjoys natural light. This mystical hall is filled with figures such as the muses surrounding the stage, Wagner’s Valkyries rising from the ceiling, a bust of Anselm Clavé on one side and one of Beethoven on the other, and elements of nature, such as flowers, palm trees and fruit.

Many great orchestras and conductors have played at the auditorium, including the Berliner Philharmoniker with Richard Strauss, Herbert von Karajan, Claudio Abbado and Mariss Jansons; the Wiener Philharmoniker, with Carl Schuricht, Karl Böhm, Zubin Mehta and Leonard Bernstein; the Amsterdam Concertgebouw with Eugen Jochum, Antal Doráti and Mariss Jansons, and the Israel Philharmonic. 

 

The Berliner Philharmoniker

 

Where to Buy Your Tickets

Online

Print in PDF or show the e-ticket barcode on your mobile device at the entrance control. If you wish to print tickets purchased online at the ticket office, a handling fee of €2 per ticket will be charged. 

If a ticket sold at the Box Office is reprinted, in the case of losing your ticket, the aforementioned fee will also apply. Palau season ticket holders are exempt from this handling fee.

 

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