Photo by age fotostock
National Centre for the Performing Arts
This gleaming performing arts center, sometimes called the Giant Egg, was designed by French architect Paul Andreu and inaugurated in 2007. The ellipsoid dome, made of titanium and glass and surrounded by a man-made lake, looks a bit like a spaceship. Within are nearly 4,500 seats across three halls. The spaces are used for kunqu and Western opera, acrobatics shows, ballet (such as Swan Lake), Chinese and Western classical music concerts, and visiting foreign troupes performing classics like Hamlet. The building is about 20 minutes’ walk from Tiananmen Square; even if you don’t have tickets to a performance, it’s worth coming to ogle this enormous architectural feat.
By Sophie Friedman, AFAR Local Expert
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The Golden Egg
When I first visited Beijing, I was pleasantly surprised by the many innovative works of architecture, such as this, the National Centre for the Performing Arts. Located just a few minutes from the Forbidden City, it is a beautiful building to see during the day, but the reflection from the water surrounding it really makes it stand out at night.
3 Xinbi St, Xicheng Qu, Beijing Shi, China, 100031