SUN VALLEY.- Last week over 5000 patrons attended the inaugural performance by the Sun Valley Symphony in its new hi-tech performance alfresco chamber surrounded by vistas of Bald and Dollar Mountains in Trail Creek Canyon of Sun Valley, Idaho.
By design, the amphitheatre demonstrates acoustical excellence, sporting a highly engineered acoustical stage and sound system, hi-tech materials and clear sight lines, all naturally integrated into a spectacular site. This masterpiece is the feat of FTL Design and Engineering Studio, New York City, led by Nicholas Goldsmith and his consultants, Jaffe Holden Acoustics, used for his performance projects. Picnickers will be treated to supreme sound quality thanks to components of the LARES-Lexicon system, which creates the sense of the sound emanating from the stage rather than a speaker system.
Goldsmith cites Goethes metaphor, architecture is frozen music as his inspiration for the pavilions commission. This statement touches on the tight relationship between architecture and music. The grand performance chamber reflects Goldsmiths view of the structure as a sensuous musical instrument itself. Goldsmith says the pavilion emerges from the terrain in the form of two stone retaining walls, rising to an apex creating an intimate sense of place and melding visually with the natural landscape.
The Symphony initially commissioned Goldsmiths design team because of their structural and technical accomplishments designing performance shells that combine architectural fabric with steel, wood, glass, and masonry. FTL Design and Engineering has designed alfresco concert venues including Pier 6 on Baltimores Inner Harbor, Washington DCs Concert Pavilion at the West Lawn of the Capitol, and the New York Philharmonic and Metropolitan Operas portable concert facility.
The permanent steel-cable roof, the first of its kind in the US, allows for unobstructed performance space, connecting to a high-tech lightweight fabric membrane covering the 1500-seat amphitheatre. The fabric membrane functions as a reflective surface for sound and light, both an interior space and an outdoor room drenched in sunlight. The amphitheatre is free from internal supports that often obstruct performance viewing sight lines. The vast amphitheater is gently sculpted into the natural surrounding landscape which extends to accommodate 3500 more patrons for picnicking and lawn viewing.
Now known as the Sun Valley Pavilion on the grounds of the Sun Valley Resort, the facility will also be used as a venue for local as well as national events year round. The facility was the vision of Carol and Earl Holding, owners of the Sun Valley Corporation funded by them, their family, and the Sun Valley Symphony, whose supporters have also helped to make this project a reality.