The Matsumoto Performing Arts Center, located on the site of the former city hall. The Arts Center features two performance halls: the great hall seats 1800, and the smaller seats 240. Rehearsal studios and various facilities support the main performance spaces. A difficult site led to orienting the performance hall such that the audience sits at the South end of the site, facing a stage at the center of the complex, with meandering circulation routes from the North entrance. In an interview published in El Croquis, Toyo Ito discussed the desire to promote audience inspiration in a mundane site:
"Our acknowledgement of the quality of the site environment and the need to create a pathway that would inspire pleasant anticipation of the extraordinary space called 'theater' led us to think about the interior and seek an appropriate facade. We were aiming for a facade that creates light conditions appropriate to each of the various sequences, while using the same system / materials, and a facade that gives the impression of being random and natural rather than geometrically based." -- from El Croquis 123.
Read ARCHITECT Magazine's complete coverage of Toyo Ito's 2013 Pritzker Prize: