PROJECT: New York City Ballet at David H. Koch Theater
LOCATION: New York, New York
CLIENT: New York City Ballet
The David H. Koch Theater has been the home of the New York City Ballet since its opening in 1964 and following, home of the New York City Opera from 1964 to 2011. Originally, called the New York State Theater, it was designed by Philip Johnson and John Burgee whose firm, JCJ, continued to provide updates and technical refurbishments to the theater throughout the 1980’s. This included adding additional aisles to the orchestra level seating plan, a new seat installation, stage rigging, and changes to the orchestra pit.
H3’s work included renovations to the theater’s numerous accessory spaces. The box office functions saw improved work spaces with glass enclosed counters, an airy addition to the original modernist lobby.
The Patron’s Lounge was updated, a space reserved for the New York City Ballet’s major donors and high-level subscribers was updated, creating a new pantry and toilet facilities, with elegant new finishes, furniture, and lighting. Hugh Hardy selected wallpaper, hand-painted, and patterned, keeping to the lounge’s original design. The rehearsal rooms were renewed with modern dance floors, lighting, and acoustics. A retractable seating system provides adaptability for small scale reviews and seating for parents while their children perform in the yearly presentation of the Nutcracker. Updates to the costume storage rooms, the physical therapy suits, and the dancer’s exercise room rounded out the scope of work. While the goal for the renovations was to provide more user-friendly public spaces and improved work facilities for the staff, alterations were also completed so that the public would perceive little occurrence of intervention.