Jean-Claude Carrière Theatre Montpellier, France Arts building photos, French architecture design

Jean-Claude Carrière Theatre, Montpellier, France

Arts Building in Languedoc-Roussillon, southern France design by A+Architecture

7 Oct 2013

Design: A+Architecture

Location: Montpellier, Languedoc-Roussillon, France

Jean-Claude Carrière Theatre

Jean-Claude Carrière Theatre Montpellier
photo © Marie-Caroline Lucat

Jean-Claude Carrière Theatre

Implementation and site

The Domaine of O site for which A+Architecture conceived the project is breathtaking ; its forest of pine trees, its history, the space it unrolls inspired a light and delicate concept.

The Theatre lands between the esplanade set for big tops and the nearby pine trees with the utmost respect towards the environment and existing trees.

The theatre orientation both breaks the historic axis and fits in the main composition of the site ; its structure relies on the strength of this axis in order to maintain unity and to enhance the new theatre in the Domaine of O.
This culture box offers its surroundings and passersby new pathways to wander through and new spots for gathering.

Jean-Claude Carrière Theatre Montpellier
photo © Marie-Caroline Lucat

The altimetry of the site allowed A+Architecture to draw comfortable and light stairs and to complete the implementation of the theatre. The stage is set, the lights are on, the curtain rose.
The proposed square offers a deep breath to the public feed. It extends the domain of O very airy spaces and plays the same register than the entrance with its large crevice. It is also place of waiting and the show, to observe those who wander on the major axis of the field. This large courtyard leads visitors at the entrance of the theatre and restaurant.

This wide mineral courtyard gives access to the theatre and restaurant.
This new cultural facility extends the lines and urban fabric that characterise the domaine of O. This lightness in the pedestrian circulations contrasts with the imposing mass of our project. A+Architecture designed impressive dimensions for an ambitious performing hall. The Jean-CLaude Carrière theatre now puts his light dress on…

Jean-Claude Carrière Theatre Montpellier
photo © Marie-Caroline Lucat

Flawless acoutisc comfort

Multiple stakes. The architecture both had to prevent the neighbourhood from undesired noises through a a perfect isolation, and also to conceive the ideal acoustic comfort not to tire the voices and make every sound and emotion perfectly audible.
Eventually this duality is improved and ensured by the width and composition of the walls and through the panels tilt, they bannish any floating echoes.

Jean-Claude Carrière Theatre Montpellier
photo © Marie-Caroline Lucat


All choices in terms of stage set, scenography and space designs are linked together with the main architecture concept.
Our thinking was devoted to technical recquirements such as the pedestrian circulations, the mobility of the stage, the space management and its adjoining entities.

A+Architecture wondered the best way to welcome theatre ensembles, how their props would be delivered, etc. The architects developed a scenography that has a huge potentiel to adapt and open to any cultural and artistic activities.

Jean-Claude Carrière Theatre Montpellier Jean-Claude Carrière Theatre Jean-Claude Carrière Theatre Montpellier Jean-Claude Carrière Theatre Montpellier Jean-Claude Carrière Theatre Montpellier
photos © Marie-Caroline Lucat

Rhythms and depth

The metaphor of Harlequin’s fabric is obvious, a character that is cherished by the Domaine of O.
A+Architecture redefined this theme to create a light and tangy color and texture. The wood panels cross each other and envelop the volume ; Wood structures the hall as well. Its declinsions avoid monotony, they vibrate and create several rythms and let the red box be seen when necessary. This vast weave is punctuated with sparks of bright diamond-shape lights, another reference to Harlequin. At night they strike the eye and create an electric and playful ambiance.

It is distended on the entrance to magnify this space and offer a new point of view on the surroundings. The wooden dress lifts itself up! And reveal its secrets. Spectators are invited to enter and discover a space dedicated to theatre. A mezzanine allow them to see and be seen. The diamond-shapes also echo inside.

The project On the entrance(entry), this dress lifts up itself to let show through the secrets of this place of theater. The spectator skips under these bottoms to discover a space treated(handled) with the same care as the outside facing. This diamond is put in echo and repeats in the internal space.

If the lace of diamond-shapes is the signature of the project, it also hides other many references to domains related to culture, theatre and to the site of course. The red tint of the building’s shell resumes ochres present on the domain ; it adds to the architectural coherence of the site. The theater is delicately integrated into the Domaine of O.

Jean-Claude Carrière Theatre Montpellier Jean-Claude Carrière Theatre Jean-Claude Carrière Theatre Montpellier Jean-Claude Carrière Theatre Montpellier Jean-Claude Carrière Theatre Montpellier
photos © Marie-Caroline Lucat

Jean-Claude Carrière Theatre Montpellier – Building Information

Project: CONCEPTION AND REALISATION OF THE JEAN-CLAUDE CARRIERE THEATRE, a 600-seat theatre and its restaurant
Client: Conseil Général de l’Hérault
Location: Montpellier, FR
Type: restricted tender procedure
architect: A+ ARCHITECTURE, led by Philippe BONON, Philippe CERVANTES, Gilles GAL project manager: Tiffanie RENARD, Architect
Mission: Under French law (Loi M.O.P.) + EXE/SYNTH, OPC, GDD, IDME, SSI

budget: 6 687 000 € excl tax
floor area: 2620 m²
1st Prize – start: Jun 2012
Completed: Jun 2013
70 m building length
22,3 m building width
13,2 m building height
21,3 m stage width
17,5 m stage depth
12 m stage height under the technical grid 10 m hstage height under the walkway
600 seats
1200 the capacity for standing guests
1200m3 the volume of wood necessary for this project 900m3 volume of KLH 300m3 640 number of KLH panels
540 tons of wood
All KLH products originate from Austria sustainable forest under the Programme for the Endorsement of Forest Certification. The other wood elements come from a national sawmill, that also benefits the PEFC certification.
104.84 kWhep/ the certified energetic consumption, calculated according the RT 2005

Jean-Claude Carrière Theatre Montpellier Jean-Claude Carrière Theatre Montpellier Jean-Claude Carrière Theatre Montpellier Jean-Claude Carrière Theatre Montpellier
photos © Marie-Caroline Lucat

Environmental excellency

Since the first designs and sketches and until its completion, the Jean-Claude Carrière Theatre, chose energy and environmental excellency. The approach aimed at bringing to the minimum, the global impact of the project on the environment. The project team under the impulsion of A+Architecture and Spie Sud-Ouest put their energy in conceiving a project that take into account the recquirements set by the Herault General Council.

A+Architecture focused both on the consumptions of exploitation to deliver a BBC project low energy building) but also on the energy necessary for the construction of the building, its capacity to be dismantled and its energy appreciation at the end life, which A+Architecture hope will happen in a long, long very long time!

A low energy consumption building:

By consumming twice less than a regular bulding, the Jean-Claude Carrière Theatre complies with the Low Consumption Label. The theatre does not recquire much energy as for the conventionnal (heating, cooling, supply air, lighting), adding to this, all lights on stage are 100% LED, making our project the very first one in France to. The iterations of dynamic thermal simulations allowed to verify that these energy savings goes hand in hand with the comfort of usage of our Mediterranean climate with no systematic need of air conditioning.

Sustainable materials:

Usually the energy necessary to build a project equals to 30 to 50 years of exploitation. Aware of this energetic parameter, A+Architecture decide to use sustainable and energy efficient materials. The new cultural equipment is entirely made of wood, the peripheric walls, the roof framing, the floors, the walls, the facade facings represent a volume of around 1000m3.

A+Architecture put the same care in the other materials from the rubber floors to the paintings and certified galzings. In fine the theatre circle of life analysis shows its exploitation years is of only 7 years.

A sustainable building site:

The first environmental feat was to conceive and build this project in exactement 12 months! The second one is how the environment and nature was at the heart of our thinking. The work in dry process implies an important part of prefabrication and the clean site construction charter was followed in a exemplary way by all the companies guaranteing a minimum impact on our environment.

If one adds to it that 90% of the project can be dismantled (and reassembled!) from the energy and environmental point of view, the Jean-Claude Carrière Theatre sure is exemplary!

Jean-Claude Carrière Theatre Montpellier images / information from A+Architecture

Location: Le domaine d’O, Montpellier, France

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Website: Théâtre Jean-Claude Carrière | Domaine d’O