Guildhall School of Music & Drama

London - UK

The £89 million redevelopment of the Milton Court site was conceived and designed by David Walker Architects. The design combines two distinct elements; Milton Court a new world-class performance and teaching facility for the Guildhall School of Music and Drama, and The Heron a 36-storey private residential tower. The scheme is separated by an atrium bisecting the site with the school occupying the entire footprint of the site and formed into a 6 storey block.

RHWL Architects were appointed as lead consultant and RHWL Arts Team appointed as architect and designer for the new Guildhall School of Music & Drama. Consultants included Arup Associates and Theatre Projects Consultants.

Milton Court boasts a 608-seat concert hall on two levels, a 223-seat proscenium arch theatre, a studio theatre with up to 128 seats, a TV studio suite, three major rehearsal spaces and a new costume department. The design allows light to flood in to the public foyer spaces contrasting with the three timber lined performance spaces. The concert hall is finished in sapele hard wood, while smoked oak was used for the theatre, and stained ply in muted colours for the studio theatre.

Clark Door provided a range of bespoke acoustic doors from Rw35dB to Rw55dB including the single hinged acoustic doors for the concert hall, clad in sapele hard wood to match the interior walls. In addition to single and double hinged doors Clark Door supplied an Rw55dB horizontal sliding door with 60 minutes fire rating, plus electrically operated Rw53dB double hinged doors used in the TV studio suite. A vertical sliding door was used in the studio theatre due to its restricted side room.

The concert hall is designed as a flexible venue suitable for performances ranging from a solo recital to a medium-sized orchestra, plus rehearsals for a full-sized symphony orchestra. Designed by Arup Associates, the acoustics are of the highest quality and are fully adjustable to suit each performance type.