There are so many ways that you can support the Music Hall Transformation and help secure its place at the heart of city life for generations. Help us reach our goal and be part of the excitement.

Our category 'A' listed Music Hall is one of Scotland's oldest and most historic concert halls.

Originally conceived as the County Assembly Rooms, an architectural competition was launched in 1818 and the winning architect was announced as Archibald Simpson. With many distinguished supporters and financial contributions from "12 mile roon", the foundation stone was laid in 1820 and the Assembly Rooms opened for business in 1822.

In 1858 plans were implemented to extend the building to accommodate a grand Music Hall designed by the architect James Matthews, responsible for many of the distinguished buildings in Aberdeen including the Art Gallery.

At the same time, a new organ, reputed to be the best in Scotland, was commissioned from Henry Willis. Along the walls of the Music Hall are panels by the renowned Scottish artist Robert Douglas Strachan (1875-1950), the only surviving examples of his early decorative work.

Thanks to the generous contribution from the Heritage Lottery Fund, we will be able to research, collect, reveal and display this rich history through our digital playground project to create an interactive Music Hall archive of stories, memories, artefacts.

If you would like to learn more and purchase a copy of ‘Celebrating 150 years of Aberdeen’s famous concert hall’ by Edi Swan, please email: transform@aberdeenperformingarts.com.

Did you know?

  • Charles Dickens gave a series of celebrated readings at the Music Hall in 1858 and 1866.
  • Aberdeen’s first film shows were screened in the Music Hall in 1886
  • The world famous Halle Orchestra first performed at the hall in 1952.
  • Alma Cogan and Eddie Calvert brought the house down in 1956.
  • American film actor, singer, civil rights campaigner Paul Robeson performed at the Music Hall in 1960 with a performance described in the local press as “extraordinary”
  • Emeli Sande’s first steps on stage were at the Music Hall and she returned in 2013 with two Brit awards under her belt.
  • Celebrated Aberdeen artist Robert Douglas Strachan was commissioned to paint a series of Orpheus murals which are in the mainstream of European Art Nouveau. They are the sole surviving examples of his early decorative work.
  • The Music Hall’s magnificent organ was built by Henry Willis, the foremost organ builder of the Victorian era and at the time it was built, it was the largest of its kind in Scotland.
  • The Music Hall is built from dressed and polished grey granite from the famous local “Dancing Cairn” quarries also used in Trafalgar Square and the Thames Embankment.

There are so many ways that you can support the Music Hall Transformation and help secure its place at the heart of city life for generations. Help us reach our goal and be part of the excitement.

 

THE MUSIC HALL’S FUTURE IS IN YOUR GIFT HELP US REACH OUR TARGET