west kowloon cultural district unveils pop-up bamboo theatre
all images courtesy of west kowloon cultural district authority




west kowloon cultural district authority (WKCDA) has unveiled the 2014 edition of their bamboo theatre: a pop-up 850 seat opera house designed by hong kong-based architect raymond fung. the building is temporarily set on the site of the city’s future cultural quarter, where the ‘xiqu center’ designed by bing thom architects / ronald lu & partners is currently under construction. (you can read more about the design and development of the opera house on designboom, here).


from now until february 9th, 2014, the bamboo mega-structure is hosting one of the world’s leading festivals celebrating xiqu and other forms of chinese and cantonese performances, encouraging public engagement with the site and fostering local and international connections. each year, the building is constructed specifically for the festivities, with varying layouts and architectural details revealed with every new iteration, and finally is dismantled at the event’s close. the 2014 design is defined by its giant oval bamboo gateway and 180 degree views over victoria harbor.


west kowloon bamboo theatre pops-up in hong kong
the 2014 west kowloon bamboo theatre

pop-up bamboo opera house at west kowloon cultural district
the opera house’s facade references traditional chinese cultural elements  




set against the backdrop of the city’s iconic skyline, the theater interrupts the modern, urban landscape with its use of ancient materials, generating a dialogue between traditional and contemporary forms of architecture. created from over 12,000 bamboo rods, the opera house is illuminated by tiny, studded bulbs, and decorated with yellow and red lanterns, leading visitors to the interior program space. highlighting shows across an wide range of xiqu genres, the pop-up space makes the historical art form accessible to new audiences, while a xiqu cinema presents films of celebrated past performances. fung envisions the space as ‘a physical and metaphorical site for families and friends to gather during the festive lunar new year celebrations, and of a meeting of the various cultures and forms of opera’


the pop-up bamboo theater boasts views over victoria harbor

west kowloon bamboo theater pops-up in hong kong
the interior theater space comprises 12,000 bamboo rods

pop-up bamboo opera house at west kowloon cultural district
ancient cultural performance taking place at the theater

west kowloon cultural district unveils pop-up bamboo theatre
view of the interior stage during a performance

pop-up bamboo opera house at west kowloon cultural district
the entrance of the west kowloon bamboo theatre

west kowloon bamboo theater pops-up in hong kong
illuminated at night

pop-up bamboo opera house at west kowloon cultural district
visitors attend an event at the west kowloon pop-up theater



about the west kowloon cultural district:

as one of the largest arts and cultural projects worldwide, the west kowloon cultural district maintains a vision to create an energetic cultural quarter for the city, and a vital platform for the local arts scene to interact, develop and collaborate. the organization provides major venues to host and produce world-class exhibitions, performances and arts and cultural events. the area will consist of ample green space in the heart of the city, embracing a vibrant harbour-front promenade, 23 hectares of open space and a landscaped avenue, that are closely connected with the neighborhood. the project is to be developed in phases. the first group of major facilities to be commissioned are the xiqu centre for chinese theatrical performances and M+, the new museum for visual culture in hong kong, scheduled for completion in 2016 and 2017 respectively.


west kowloon cultural district unveils pop-up bamboo theatre