The £8.7million transformation of Aberdeen’s Music Hall is still on track to open this year with major changes to the internal structure now completed.
Extensive underground excavations works to expand the basement of the building have been carried out and the public areas rearranged.
New public toilets will now be built in the basement freeing up space on the ground floor for a new creative learning studio, cafe and bar. The box office has also been relocated and a new intimate performing space has been created.
For the very first time in its history, the 200-year old building has got three lifts, allowing access from basement to balcony to people with restricted mobility.
APA’s Chief Executive Jane Spiers said the “once-in-a-generation” project had been challenging due to the huge structural challenges, adding: “I am pleased to say that we have successfully overcome these challenges as a consequence of some amazing feats of structural engineering, creative workarounds, an expert team passionate about the project and good project management.”
Contractor Kier Construction Scotland area director, Sean O’Callaghan, said: “Now that the critical structural engineering work has been completed, we are out of the ground and ready to begin breathing life into the exciting new blueprint.”
The multimillion pound project is being funded by Aberdeen Performing Arts (APA), which is a charitable trust and so far they have raised £6.7million of the target.
The transformation is due to be completed before the end of 2018, but Ms Spiers explained that this had been pushed back partly due to finding the remaining £2million of funds.
“We are happy to be able to invest in the cultural life of the city in this way,” said Ms Spiers. “We are so grateful for the support we’ve received to date. We’re now on the last lap of the fundraising campaign and we are thankful for the on-going support of the people of Aberdeen and the north-east.”
To find out more about the Music Hall Transformation and to choose a way to support the cause, visit http://www.aberdeenperformingarts.com/musichall/give-a-gift