The National Center for the Performing Arts, BeiJing 北京 (2)

The NCPA, also sometimes known as the National Theater, is situated in central BeiJing, close to TianAnMen Square.


The giant titanium-and-glass dome west of Tian'AnMen Square (behind the Great Hall of the People) hosts Chinese and international art performances of the highest calibre. The complex houses an opera house, a music hall and a drama hall and can seat up to 6,200. It is the flagship performance space in China. Designed by French architect Paul Andreu, it opened in 2007.

The dome is 212 meters across in the east-west direction, 144 meters in the north-south direction, and is 46 meters high. It is situated in the center of a large shallow pond and the entrance passes under it. Paul Andreu has said that he envisioned the hall as a tribute to the traditional Chinese image of Heaven and Earth: round above square.


At first, there appears to be no entrance, but in fact it runs under the surrounding pond.


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