Barbican Centre in London

Thursday, 1 December 2022 - 12:00 pm (CET/MEZ) Berlin | Author/Destination:
Category/Kategorie: General, House of the Month, London, Museums, Exhibitions, Opera Houses, Theaters, Libraries
Reading Time:  4 minutes

© flickr.com - Rich/cc-by-2.0

© flickr.com – Rich/cc-by-2.0

The Barbican Centre is a performing arts centre in the Barbican Estate of the City of London and the largest of its kind in Europe. The centre hosts classical and contemporary music concerts, theatre performances, film screenings and art exhibitions. It also houses a library, three restaurants, and a conservatory. The Barbican Centre is a member of the Global Cultural Districts Network. The London Symphony Orchestra and the BBC Symphony Orchestra are based in the centre’s Concert Hall. In 2013, it once again became the London-based venue of the Royal Shakespeare Company following the company’s departure in 2001.

The Barbican Centre is owned, funded, and managed by the City of London Corporation. It was built as the City’s gift to the nation at a cost of £161 million (equivalent to £480 million in 2014) and was officially opened to the public by Queen Elizabeth II on 3 March 1982. The Barbican Centre is also known for its brutalist architecture.

© Andy Mabbett/cc-by-sa-3.0 © Andy Mabbett/cc-by-sa-3.0 Barbican Arts Centre © Kleon3/cc-by-sa-4.0 Barbican Centre Garden © LilaTretikov/cc-by-sa-4.0 Barbican Hall © FA2010 © Daniel Case/cc-by-sa-3.0 © flickr.com - Rich/cc-by-2.0 © Andy Mabbett/cc-by-sa-3.0
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Barbican Centre Garden © LilaTretikov/cc-by-sa-4.0
The second-floor library is one of the five City of London libraries. It is one of the largest public libraries in London and has a separate arts library, a large music library and a children’s library which regularly conducts free events. The Barbican Library houses the ‘London Collection’ of historical books and resources, some of which date back 300 years, all being available on loan. The library presents regular literary events and has an art exhibition space for hire. The music library has two free practice pianos for public use.

The Barbican Centre had a long development period, only opening some years after the surrounding Barbican Estate housing complex had been finished. It is situated in an area which was badly bombed during World War II. The Barbican Centre, designed by Peter Chamberlin, Geoffry Powell and Christoph Bon of Chamberlin, Powell and Bon in the Brutalist style, has a complex multi-level layout with numerous entrances. Lines painted on the ground help would-be audience members avoid getting lost on the walkways of the Barbican Estate, within which the centre is located, on the way to it. The Barbican Centre’s design – a concrete ziggurat – has always been controversial and divides opinion. It was voted “London’s ugliest building” in a Grey London poll in September 2003. In September 2001, arts minister Tessa Blackstone announced that the Barbican Centre complex was to be a Grade II listed building. It has been designated a site of special architectural interest for its scale, its cohesion and the ambition of the project. The centre was designed by architectural practice Chamberlin, Powell and Bon, who were also responsible for the upscale residential area surrounding the centre (the Barbican Estate), as well as the nearby Golden Lane Estate. Project architect John Honer later worked on the British Library at St Pancras – a red brick ziggurat.

Read more on Barbican Centre, cityoflondon.gov.uk – Barbican Centre and Wikipedia Barbican Centre. Learn more about the use of photos. To inform you about latest news most of the city, town or tourism websites offer a newsletter service and/or operate Facebook pages/Twitter accounts. In addition more and more destinations, tourist organizations and cultural institutions offer Apps for your Smart Phone or Tablet, to provide you with a mobile tourist guide (Smart Traveler App by U.S. Department of State - Weather report by weather.com - Global Passport Power Rank - Travel Risk Map - Democracy Index - GDP according to IMF, UN, and World Bank - Global Competitiveness Report - Corruption Perceptions Index - Press Freedom Index - World Justice Project - Rule of Law Index - UN Human Development Index - Global Peace Index - Travel & Tourism Competitiveness Index). If you have a suggestion, critique, review or comment to this blog entry, we are looking forward to receive your e-mail at comment@wingsch.net. Please name the headline of the blog post to which your e-mail refers to in the subject line.




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