Pristina is a city with a rich cultural heritage, centre of Kosovo’s national and international cultural and artistic developments, home to the largest cultural institutions of the country.
As part of an international competition, One Works was invited to develop a concept design for a new National Opera Theatre that would address the long-identified need for a purpose-built, large-sized performance venue, housing the Kosovo Philharmonic and providing proper new spaces for the Opera of Kosovo and for the Ballet of Kosovo, all currently based in Pristina.
Pristina currently hosts three active main theatres: the National Theatre, the Oda Theatre and Dodona Theatre which, together with the nearby Faculty of Arts and art or music schools in general, will hopefully interact with the new facility generating a stimulating civic art destination network.
The new cultural facility will accommodate a wide range of different indoor and outdoor performances, lectures, events, conferences, and some of the many festivals periodically organised in town, starting from the DAM Festival.
An inspiring conceptual design for this cultural facility aims to interpret the institution’s mission to provide the community and the whole country with educational and immersive opportunities in culture, entertainment and nature.
Creating a distinctive global institution for a growing country, with innovative spaces for experiencing performances, along with new opportunities to learn, create, discover and engage, is the objective of this design proposal.
Recent similar successful projects around the world, showed how large performance venues have the chance to positively transform the city, creating new popular city spots and landmarks, empowering local artistic initiatives and generating a strong sense of community, driving at the same time qualitative urban changes in the surroundings.
The new concept entails a new comprehensive vision aiming to represent the expectations, wishes and perspectives of the Kosovar citizens, providing a new vibrant destination offering state-of-the-art performance venues together with a series of amenities, services, contents, experiences and environmental qualities promoting the use of this new public institution not only in conjunction with the planned events. Inclusion, integration, connectivity, identity, identification, programmatic flexibility, acoustic adaptability, sense of community, social and cultural growth, sustainability, are some of the key-words that guided the design approach.
In a rather small-scale urban landscape, the new cultural facility will stand out, like an actor entering in the stage. A landmark and a new magnet for the performance’s audience, the performers, the local community and for Kosovo in general. The project area offers an extraordinary opportunity to design a new vibrant, sustainable and unique destination, combining entertainment and education within highly evolved and equipped spaces with the aim of promoting cultural values enhancing the sense of community.