The city of Breda, Netherlands, decided to bring in the EEA Architects firm to design a small adjacent theatre to an existing building.
The old brick building from the late 19th century now has a restaurant and cafe on its ground floor, and offices and meeting spaces on the upper floors.
The popstage emerges from the earth. It appears to visitors as a small found object with an animal shape, almost like a primitive organism arising from the netherworld. It is completely closed, without outside openings, only a few slits on the peak like fish gills. It looks like a ground protuberance and it attaches to the old building like a parasite. The new building, that connects to the old one through a corridor, holds the stage, the lobby and a concert hall.
To satisfy concerts’ acoustic requirements, the whole structure was build as a double dome, a shell within a shell with an empty space between them. The two shells are separated by one meter, which is enough to serve as a passageway and provide sufficient sound insulation. The first inner shell is made in plywood and an insulating material and has no openings. The framework, the second shell that envelopes the first one, is a hybrid cement and steel section covered by a 10 cm thick layer of porous cement, also for acoustic purposes.
The pre-oxidized plates of copper give it the brown color that the city wanted. The unusual choice of a metal material like this, used to mould supple forms, make the structure a kind of lung, seeming as if it could breathe and make the surrounding area breathe.