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Architecture for Music: Musikverein Vienna

This is the Sunday Series, a peek of things in the art music world.

Music has a close bound with architecture for quite some time. Concert halls and opera houses are also the ones which effects the music and also effected by music. These structures are devoted to music, from within them we witness the grow of musical arts.

This series presents the beauty of the structure, in which music creativity flows abundantly.


a_wien_musikverein_4Musikverein is one of the most well-known concert buildings in the world. This very complex is located in the musical city of Vienna and hosts the Wiener Symphoniker concerts. The concert hall initially was built in 1867-1870 for “Gesellschaft der Musikfreunde” and is known as an acoustically perfect concert hall in the world along with Boston Symphonic Hall and the former Gewandhaus in Amsterdam.

At the beginning (1870) this Musikverein has two halls, the Big and Small Hall.


Großer Musikvereinssaal

“Großer Musikvereinssaal” (also known as “Goldener Saal” [Golden Hall]). Sculptures by Franz Melnitzky. Famous for its excellent acoustics. 1744 seats (+ 300 standing).

“Brahms-Saal”. Opened 1870 as “Kleiner Saal” with a concert by Clara Schumann. Later alterations. 1937 renamed in honour of the German composer, Johannes Brahms, who created many of his piano works in this hall. 1992-1993 renovations to the original plans. Used for chamber concerts and Lieder recitals. Ca. 600 seats.



This hall is so famous that it issues 24 carats coins every year as valuable collectibles, four versions each year. A historic organ was installed in the Konzerthaus by the Austrian firm Rieger in 1907 right at the back side of the hall.

Goldener Saal

Goldener Saal

There are additional 5 halls added later in the complex giving the complex more space to hosts concerts and rehearsals and also recording sessions.

“Gottfried-von-Einem-Saal”. Opened as “Kammersaal”. Renovated 1996. Renamed in honour of the Austrian composer, Gottfried von Einem (1918-1996). Used for small concerts, lectures and functions. Also used as a rehearsal room and as engineering room during sound recordings.



“4 Neue Säle” [4 New Halls], built 2001-2004 by Wilhelm Holzbauer and Dieter Irresberger. Acoustic consultant: Bernd Quirin.

  • “Gläserner Saal” [Glass Hall], used for orchestra rehearsals and concerts. In honour of a sponsor, also known as “Magna Auditorium”. 380 seats.
  • “Hölzerner Saal” [Wooden Hall], used for chamber music rehearsals. Also used as an extension of the foyers. 50 seats.
  • “Metallener Saal” [Metallic Hall], used for sound experiments of all kinds. 70 seats.
  • “Steinerner Saal” [Stone Hall], used for lectures, presentations, discussions, and exhibitions. 60 seats.

Gläserner Saal

Pictures and infos:

About mikebm (1339 Articles)
An arts journalist, a conductor, an educator, a young arts manager whose passion drove him to leave a multinational IT cooperation to study Arts Administration and Cultural Policy in London and went back to Indonesia to build the scene there.

3 Comments on Architecture for Music: Musikverein Vienna

  1. asik…keren abis nih tempat, kebanyakan tempat konser di luar sana uda punya aula2 yang berbeda untuk format2 konser yang beda2 juga yah, tergantung butuh yang mana. mm, uda jadi tradisi ratusan taun juga sih klo di sana, kesadaran masyarakat dan pemerintah untuk mendukung itu semua juga uda mapan.

  2. iya sih… tapi kita ga bisa berhenti bermimpi punya tempat yang representatif seperti ini juga kan?

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