Torontoist was recently invited to take a peek inside at the soon-to-be-opened Four Seasons Centre for the Performing Arts, better known as Toronto’s opera house. Being one of the most highly anticipated buildings in Toronto history, we have to say we were more than a little curious to a look inside.
The “city room space”, or lobby, is well named. The open concept interior has the feeling of transparency, made mostly of steel, wood and a lot of glass, an “indoor piazza” as our host (and architect) Gary McCluskie described. Those glass walls are undoubtedly the coolest thing about the place–not only does it look as if all five floors are floating but it causes Toronto’s buildings and busy streets to be a backdrop, like large pieces of moving city art. A massive translucent glass staircase runs down the middle of the space and we’re cursing the fact that we left our ballgowns at home.
Similar to the lobby, the concert hall has the same modern design. Sleek and urban looking with a lot of beige, brown, pine wood and steel, it looks like the largest and fanciest King St. W loft we’ve ever seen. Built in traditional opera house horseshoe shape ( Like La Scala in Milan or The Garnier in Paris), it is five levels of very vertical space. The small architectural details– the design lights built into every balcony or the impressive ceiling that looks something like the Rings of Saturn–stand out against the minimalist design of the auditorium. Seats look onto an orchestra pit that can rise from ground level and a stage that is 54ft. wide and 59 ft. deep ( and 110 ft. high!).
We can’t wait to don our opera glasses and ask “Yes but why does everyone have to die in the end?”