This is the project for restoring the Baku Opera House and Ballet Theatre, a beautiful and potentially one the most extraordinary monuments for music, spectacle, ballet, peoples’ dreams, in the world. This important building has decay-related problems and recent interventions have been characterized by the presence of poor-quality or badly decayed materials and our project has given rise to different and inter-connected design choices. One of these choices is referred to the idea of replacing the poor-quality materials with other high-quality ones such as re-designing the flooring and the internal wall panelling of the foyer and the facings of the historical façades without denying the identity of this monument. The new floors of the four levels of the foyers are conceived as a continuous geometrical mosaic of the most elegant Italian marbles, based on the colors of gold, white and yellow. A complementary choice of our project is the careful restoring and enriching of the existing decorations. Our project has undertaken a careful high-quality restoration of this wonderful, important monument that draws upon the latest technological and scientific expertise (the scientific restoration of the beautiful decorative work of the capitals, the ceilings, the foyer walls and the themed decorative work of the historic façade). A similar design strategy of our project involves a further harmonious enrichment of the precious interior with the addition of furnishing elements and decorative work designed to the highest standard as befits such a splendid monument to theatrical performances (the wood panelling, the light fittings, the enormous vaulted ceiling above the stalls with new decorations referring to images already existing in the Theatre, the decoration of the partitions separating the boxes from the seats in the dress and upper circle, the new elegant stylistically coherent coffee shops and corners). A specific strategy of new design and careful attention to the urban identity of the Theatre has given birth, in our project to the new “Theatre Square” created in the space right in front of the historic façade. This square has been conceived as an outside foyer of the Theatre and it will be constructed using precious materials; there will be seating and plays of water and light that will act as a prelude to the theatrical performance and to the architecture of the Theatre.
Locality: Baku (Azerbaijan)
Client: Extro srl
Assignment: Final and Executive Design Project – Restauration and Renovation Project
Design Date: 2011 – 2012
Cooperation DVS: arch. Federica De Curtis, arch. Francesca Bastiani