Architecture

Studio Bell: Architecture that makes music

Studio Bell: Architecture that...
Internationally renowned ceramics producers Tichelaar Makkum created the 220,000 terra cotta tiles used in Studio Bell, the home of Canada's National Music Centre
Internationally renowned ceramics producers Tichelaar Makkum created the 220,000 terra cotta tiles used in Studio Bell, the home of Canada's National Music Centre
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In designing the Studio Bell's interior, US based Acoustic Engineers Jaffe Holden used acoustic modeling to identify ideal materials and shapes to transport sound throughout the space
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In designing the Studio Bell's interior, US based Acoustic Engineers Jaffe Holden used acoustic modeling to identify ideal materials and shapes to transport sound throughout the space
"Our goal was to attenuate sound by half if possible at ALL frequencies from the lobby to the top gallery. In order to achieve this we needed to have a low frequency slot absorbing system, (similar to a Helmholtz resonator)"
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"Our goal was to attenuate sound by half if possible at ALL frequencies from the lobby to the top gallery. In order to achieve this we needed to have a low frequency slot absorbing system, (similar to a Helmholtz resonator)"
Jaffe Holden's goal was to attenuate sound by half at all frequencies from the lobby to the top gallery by varying the distance between tiles in critical locations
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Jaffe Holden's goal was to attenuate sound by half at all frequencies from the lobby to the top gallery by varying the distance between tiles in critical locations
As the home of Canada's National Music Centre, Studio Bell is more than a museum
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As the home of Canada's National Music Centre, Studio Bell is more than a museum
Fifth floor of Studio Bell looking towards the walkway
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Fifth floor of Studio Bell looking towards the walkway
The top floor of the NMC with its massive skylight and suspended lounge area
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The top floor of the NMC with its massive skylight and suspended lounge area
Canadian musical legends, memorabilia and interactive exhibits populate the National Music Centre's five floors
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Canadian musical legends, memorabilia and interactive exhibits populate the National Music Centre's five floors
One of the many exhibits paying tribute to Canadian musicians
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One of the many exhibits paying tribute to Canadian musicians
The NMC's acoustic canyons were engineered to transport sound throughout the space
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The NMC's acoustic canyons were engineered to transport sound throughout the space
NMC's circular skylight, floating lounge and acoustic tiles greet visitors to the fifth floor
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NMC's circular skylight, floating lounge and acoustic tiles greet visitors to the fifth floor
There's over 400 artifacts and objects from the National Music Centre's impressive collection
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There's over 400 artifacts and objects from the National Music Centre's impressive collection
Former keyboard player for  Iron Butterfly & Spencer Davis, John Leimseider, works on-site to conserve and restore electronic instruments like Stevie Wonder's TONTO
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Former keyboard player for  Iron Butterfly & Spencer Davis, John Leimseider, works on-site to conserve and restore electronic instruments like Stevie Wonder's TONTO
Over 220,000 specially designed tiles cover the Studio Bell, both inside and out
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Over 220,000 specially designed tiles cover the Studio Bell, both inside and out
The top floor doubles as event space
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The top floor doubles as event space
Acoustic canyons occasionally open up to allow viewing points
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Acoustic canyons occasionally open up to allow viewing points
The staircases were also designed with acoustics in mind
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The staircases were also designed with acoustics in mind
East Village Skybridge connects the main space to the refurbished King Eddy and various rehearsal spaces
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East Village Skybridge connects the main space to the refurbished King Eddy and various rehearsal spaces
Studio Bell covers two-city blocks
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Studio Bell covers two-city blocks
Designed by Allied Works Architects, the Studio Bell rises over two city blocks using nine interlocking towers as its key anchor points
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Designed by Allied Works Architects, the Studio Bell rises over two city blocks using nine interlocking towers as its key anchor points
The Canadian Music Hall of Fame
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The Canadian Music Hall of Fame
Designed by  Malcolm Cecil, TONTO (The Original New Timbral Orchestra)  is the world’s first and largest, multi-timbral polyphonic analog synthesizer
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Designed by  Malcolm Cecil, TONTO (The Original New Timbral Orchestra)  is the world’s first and largest, multi-timbral polyphonic analog synthesizer
Studio Bell includes various interactive spaces, allowing visitors to touch, hear and experience sound in different ways
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Studio Bell includes various interactive spaces, allowing visitors to touch, hear and experience sound in different ways
Hundreds of donated and restored instruments populate the NMC's exhibition floors
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Hundreds of donated and restored instruments populate the NMC's exhibition floors
Studio Bell will house special exhibits and instruments
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Studio Bell will house special exhibits and instruments
The backdoor of the Rolling Stones Mobile Studio sports a familiar set of lips
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The backdoor of the Rolling Stones Mobile Studio sports a familiar set of lips
One of the NMC's many exhibition spaces
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One of the NMC's many exhibition spaces
National Music Centre’s impressive collection, spans over 450 years of music technology and innovation
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National Music Centre’s impressive collection, spans over 450 years of music technology and innovation
View from the main foyer looking up towards the prairie-inspired ceiling on the left, acoustic canyon in the center and wrapping skylight in the roof
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View from the main foyer looking up towards the prairie-inspired ceiling on the left, acoustic canyon in the center and wrapping skylight in the roof
Studio Bell's interior design is not only acoustically brilliant, but also an outstanding example of architectural innovation
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Studio Bell's interior design is not only acoustically brilliant, but also an outstanding example of architectural innovation
The performance hall resides above the main foyer
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The performance hall resides above the main foyer
The NMC hosts over 22,000-square-feet of exhibition gallery space
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The NMC hosts over 22,000-square-feet of exhibition gallery space
Invented as a result of the Rolling Stones sleep schedule, the Rolling Stone Mobile Studio (RSM) was used by the group to record live albums after hours and contracted out to the likes of Bob Marley and Led Zeppelin
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Invented as a result of the Rolling Stones sleep schedule, the Rolling Stone Mobile Studio (RSM) was used by the group to record live albums after hours and contracted out to the likes of Bob Marley and Led Zeppelin
Visitors feel like being inside a Stradivarius
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Visitors feel like being inside a Stradivarius
Before digital was invented there was something called analog
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Before digital was invented there was something called analog
Inside the Rolling Stone Mobile Studio
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Inside the Rolling Stone Mobile Studio
The RSM's soundboard is still functional after 40 years
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The RSM's soundboard is still functional after 40 years
Old school push button technology at its finest in the RSM
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Old school push button technology at its finest in the RSM
RSM (Rolling Stone Mobile) Studio has its own space inside the restored King Eddy Hotel, and will be accessible to the public through specialized tours in late 2016
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RSM (Rolling Stone Mobile) Studio has its own space inside the restored King Eddy Hotel, and will be accessible to the public through specialized tours in late 2016
Underneath the walkway at Studio Bell 
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Underneath the walkway at Studio Bell 
Internationally renowned ceramics producers Tichelaar Makkum created the 220,000 terra cotta tiles used in Studio Bell, the home of Canada's National Music Centre
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Internationally renowned ceramics producers Tichelaar Makkum created the 220,000 terra cotta tiles used in Studio Bell, the home of Canada's National Music Centre
220,000 glazed tiles cover the exterior and interior facades
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220,000 glazed tiles cover the exterior and interior facades
Built in 1905 the King Eddy Hotel was considered the largest artifact in the National Music Centre collection, its restoration involved putting each original brick on numbered pallets and then reassembling them—approximately 48,000 bricks—to their original glory
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Built in 1905 the King Eddy Hotel was considered the largest artifact in the National Music Centre collection, its restoration involved putting each original brick on numbered pallets and then reassembling them—approximately 48,000 bricks—to their original glory
NMC's new home recently opened to the public in Calgary's revitalized East Village
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NMC's new home recently opened to the public in Calgary's revitalized East Village
The RSM's insides still smell like Keith Richards on a Tuesday, but also feature all original recording equipment and fabric panelling
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The RSM's insides still smell like Keith Richards on a Tuesday, but also feature all original recording equipment and fabric panelling
A 4,000-square-foot, 300-seat performance hall was designed to be closed off for private performances or opened up to allow music to flow throughout the acoustic canyons
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A 4,000-square-foot, 300-seat performance hall was designed to be closed off for private performances or opened up to allow music to flow throughout the acoustic canyons
"The building is a powerful instrument that exists to emanate music and light. The walls, clad in terra cotta, rise in subtle curves that merge, part, and intertwine, modeled by light, gravity, and acoustics."
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"The building is a powerful instrument that exists to emanate music and light. The walls, clad in terra cotta, rise in subtle curves that merge, part, and intertwine, modeled by light, gravity, and acoustics."
Over 220,000 specially designed tiles cover the National Music Centre, both inside and out
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Over 220,000 specially designed tiles cover the National Music Centre, both inside and out
Both the interior and exterior walls are clad with the specially-commissioned tiles, with spacing and placement determined through computer modeling.
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Both the interior and exterior walls are clad with the specially-commissioned tiles, with spacing and placement determined through computer modeling.
View gallery - 48 images

Commissioned by Canada's NationalMusic Centre as part of an ambitious vision to create a world-classexhibition of musical innovation and technology, Studio Bell is a new landmark building for Calgary that's designed to resonate with its audiences – literally. We headed to East Village to see (and hear) it for ourselves.

Architectural design work for the CAD $191 million, 160,000 sq ft (14,864 sq m) facility wasawarded to Allied Works Architecture following an internationalcompetition. The firm worked in collaboration with a team ofconsultants including award-winning acoustic specialists JaffeHolden.

As the home of Canada's National Music Centre, Studio Bell is more than a museum. It houses five floors of exhibitionspace, radio broadcast facilities, acoustic and electronic recordinglaboratories and a 300-seat performance space. There's over 400 artifacts and objects from the National MusicCentre's impressive collection, spanning over 450 years of musictechnology and innovation. Notable among them is TONTO (TheOriginal New Timbral Orchestra), one of thelargest multi-timbralpolyphonic analog synthesizers in the world, which was used to record albums by Stevie Wonder and The Isley Brothers in the1970s. It's also home to the Rolling Stones Mobile Recording Studio (RSM) which wasused to record albums by Led Zeppelin and Deep Purple, as well as the Stones.

Designed by  Malcolm Cecil, TONTO (The Original New Timbral Orchestra)  is the world’s first and largest, multi-timbral polyphonic analog synthesizer
Designed by  Malcolm Cecil, TONTO (The Original New Timbral Orchestra)  is the world’s first and largest, multi-timbral polyphonic analog synthesizer

The building itself rises over two city blocks, using nine interlocking towersas its key anchor points. It features a pedestrian walkway elevated 65 ft (19.8 m) above a busyroadway below and a dramaticentryway that opens up into a five-story space that follows the contours and curves of the building's exterior. These acoustical "canyons" are designed echo the formand acoustical function found within musical instruments.

The backdoor of the Rolling Stones Mobile Studio sports a familiar set of lips
The backdoor of the Rolling Stones Mobile Studio sports a familiar set of lips

"The building is filled with the reverberation of voices andmusic, drawing visitors up into five floors of performance,exhibit, and collections spaces," syas Brad Cloepfil,Principal, Allied Works Architecture. "The building is a powerfulinstrument that exists to emanate music and light. The walls, clad interra cotta, rise in subtle curves that merge, part, and intertwine,modeled by light, gravity, and acoustics."

Cloepfil is referring to the 220,000 glazed terra cotta tiles thatprovide much of the acoustic and aesthetic success of the building.Both the interior and exterior walls are clad with thespecially-commissioned tiles, with spacing and placement determined through computer modeling.

Over 220,000 specially designed tiles cover the National Music Centre, both inside and out
Over 220,000 specially designed tiles cover the National Music Centre, both inside and out

"We tried severalscenarios where we created slots between the tiles of variousdistances and filled the cavities with various depths of fiberglasssound absorbing batting," explains Russ Cooper, Principal,Acoustics for Jaffe Holden. "Our goal was to attenuate sound byhalf if possible at all frequencies from the lobby to the topgallery. In order to achieve this we needed to have a low frequencyslot absorbing system, similar to a Helmholtz resonator. This meant a smaller slot opening and a thick insulation. For midand high frequency absorption, the opening between tiles is greaterand the insulation thinner."

The design team was also challenged to incorporate and revitalize thehistoric King Edward Hotel, one of Calgary's oldest buildings and alegendary Blues club that occupied part of the development site. The Eddy's brick façade was meticulously disassembled,each brick numbered, then restored and resurrected as a local live music venue. The hotel also houses one of NMC's key artifacts, the aforementioned Rolling Stones Mobile Recording Studio, which is currentlyundergoing restoration before being made available for useby musicians taking part in the NMC's Artist-in-Residence program in 2017.

Visitors feel like being inside a Stradivarius
Visitors feel like being inside a Stradivarius

Studio Bell opened its doors to the public in July, and the finishing touches are due to be completed in October. If you don't happen to be traveling to Alberta anytime soon, take a quick tour of this intriguing building in our photo gallery.

Source: Studio Bell, NMC

View gallery - 48 images
1 comment
paroway@gmail.com
GOT to experience this!