The show might not be going on at the Queensland Performing Arts Centre (QPAC) right now due to the COVID-19 pandemic, but that doesn’t mean there aren’t sounds coming from the cultural precinct. While these sounds aren’t those of music or vocals, it is the clunk of heavy machinery, emanating from a construction site on what was once the often underutilised Playhouse Green. Work continues on the development of the New Performing Arts Venue (NPAV), the fifth theatre for QPAC, which is expected to open its doors in late-2022.
Unless you are a resident of South Brisbane, you may not have had the opportunity to watch the progress being made on the construction of NPAV. Having headed into the city earlier today for other reasons, I stopped by to take a few photos to highlight the state it is currently in. While still very early days in construction, the most notable work so far is the excavation of the site and some demolition work of parts of what was initially back-of-house around the Playhouse.
The QPAC New Performing Arts Venue is a $150 million construction project funded jointly between the Queensland State Government ($125 Million) and Queensland Performing Arts Centre ($25 Million). No news has been made public about whether the COVID-19 pandemic, which has complicated business continuity for the performing arts industry as a whole in the immediate future, will impact the funding ratio.
The venue is planned to deliver a seating capacity of at least 1,500, and is expected to be a new home for Queensland State Companies (Queensland Ballet, Queensland Theatre, Opera Queensland and Queensland Symphony Orchestra) and have the capacity also to host major musicals which require similar capacity levels. It is also due to include two new studios, which can be viewed from street level.
NPAV involves Blight Rayner and Snøhetta as its Principal Consultant team, with a preview of their vision available below. Lendlease is serving as the project’s Managing Contractor.
QPAC’s New Performing Arts Venue Concept Artwork
Images sourced from Arts Queensland.