Located at the eastern entrance of the West Kowloon Cultural District, the Xiqu Centre will be dedicated to facilitating the continuation of Xiqu's cultural legacy, encouraging its reinvention and nurturing new artists and audiences in the 21st century. It will showcase different kinds of Xiqu, and promote the development of Cantonese opera in a contemporary context.
The Xiqu Centre will symbolise the importance of Xiqu and its rich heritage for our city. It was conceived to support and promote Xiqu as a contemporary art form making it accessible to new audiences, and keeping this remarkable piece of our heritage alive for future generations.
A cultural sanctuary, blending theatre, art and public space, the Centre, when completed in 2016, will be a place for contemplation and celebration. Like the soft glow of a lantern behind a beaded curtain, the Xiqu Centre will light up the eastern entrance of the West Kowloon Cultural District and act as a lantern for Hong Kong. It will house a Main Theatre and a Tea House with two tea rooms featuring traditional Chinese performances, plus a Small Theatre which will be built in Phase 2.
In the search for the essence of Xiqu, the winning design by Bing Thom Architects and Ronald Lu & Partners is centred around four core design principles: a gateway and a performance pavilion; the courtyard; nature and the urban landscape; and a journey of transition and flow.
The Xiqu Centre design has been conceived with sustainability in mind. The design team has carried out initial energy test models on the design and are confident that the required sustainability targets can be met. The structural design allows the building to be constructed from the top and bottom at the same time. This innovative and efficient construction approach will ensure the building will be completed at pace, enabling the Centre to open as the first building on the West Kowloon Cultural District site.