A Moonlit Orchestra Stage Emerges From China

Moon Stage ©  DL Atelier
Moon Stage © DL Atelier
Photo of Amber C. Snider
Home & Design Editor11 May 2017

The enchanting Moon Stage concept design imagines a playground and performance space for children in China.

After witnessing the passion of one local music teacher, Beijing-based architecture firm DL Atelier designed a moon-inspired orchestra stage for children in the remote village of Malan. Senior instructor Xiaolan Deng teaches music to 80 children who otherwise wouldn’t have formal music education, and even built a children’s orchestra named after the village, according to the firm’s press release. When principal architects Liuyang and Xudan heard about Xiaolan’s story and encountered her “genuine, warm” spirit, they were moved to design the Moon Stage.

Moon Stage | © DL Atelier

“When I first met Xiaolan and her students, we were deeply touched by bonding between them. It was the purest emotional connection out of the deepest love, therefore our design idea came from their purity,” the architects wrote.

Set on the riverside, the Moon Stage would be realized with “clear pebbles with tiny crystal balls among them” that shimmer and dance in the nightly moonbeams like “restless tiny shuttles weaving silver tapestry.” The combination of water, moonbeams, tiny crystal balls, and music lends a magical, mystical element to the design—one that is highlighted by the gaze of the full moon.

Moon Stage | © DL Atelier

All aspects of the design mirror the moon, not only in materials, but also in shape: the audience will see a “half moon-shaped stage and half of its reflection [will] splice together [to become] a full moon.” The backstage area includes a set of stairs that lead directly to the village, helping to link the children’s activity to that of the community.

Moon Stage | © DL Atelier

The Moon Stage would serve as a daytime playground, a performance space, and a haven for musical activity. The firm calls the design an “emotional stage,”—the conception of which grew out of one teacher’s love for her children.

The Moon Stage design received further recognition this year as one of Architizer’s 2017 A+Award winners.

Moon Stage | © DL Atelier

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