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Striking opulence of the Sydney Coliseum Theatre by Cox

Sydney Coliseum Theatre by COX is a dazzling and grandiose space, reflective of both its name and the theatrics it hosts.

Striking opulence of the Sydney Coliseum Theatre by Cox

To bestow a space with the title ‘coliseum’ comes with some responsibility. The grandeur of the title requires a public space of significant size, stateliness and resplendence.

With 2000 seats, three foyers and seven bars, Cox Architecture certainly ensured that Sydney Coliseum Theatre fulfills this statement of splendour. 

Looking up at the Field of Stars Chandelier in the high ceilinged atrium of Sydney Coliseum Theatre with the wood panelling railing of the sweeping staircase nearby.

The exterior wall of Sydney Coliseum Theatre is composed of concrete, creating a fluid yet solid curtain around the foyers and auditorium. Through the concrete curtain, vertical lines of glass reveal moments of colour from the theatre’s interior to those outside the building.

Dazzling visitors, the interior atrium shimmers under the bespoke Field of Stars Chandelier – a 241 stranded chandelier featuring thousands of suspended crystals – which follows the curve of the grand staircase, a centrepiece of the magnificent foyer.

Wood panels border the sweeping staircase in the white atrium of Sydney Coliseum Theatre.

The palette evolves through the space to create a sense of anticipation, from ivory and dove grey terrazzo floors, to a ribbon of timber as the dark performance space is entered.

Located in Rooty Hill, a suburb in Sydney’s west, the theatre is a significant cultural marker of the buzzing West HQ entertainment and dining district.

The main stage of the Sydney Coliseum Theatre  with timber edges, black seating and black curtains.

“Alongside the functional diversity, the space required an acoustic chameleon quality to appeal to a broad spectrum of users; those cultural connoisseurs accustomed to the Sydney Opera House for example, while at the same time creating a welcoming and comfortable place to encourage cultural engagement to the uninitiated. The team at COX were able to rise to this challenge,” says West HQ CEO Richard Errington.

It’s no surprise that Sydney Coliseum Theatre by COX Architecture was shortlisted in the World Architecture awards. As the only Australian entrant to be shortlisted in the World Festival of Interiors category, the project has garnered significant local and global attention.

The curving and colossal cement exterior of Sydney Coliseum Theatre.

The project also took out the Public Design Award at the Australian Interior Design Awards 2020 and both the Product Commercial and Industrial Award and the Architectural Interior Award at 2020 Good Design Australia.

“The Coliseum, in its form, sequence, atmosphere and crafting, seeks to draw all into the drama with heightened senses commensurate of an ‘evening at the theatre’,” say the architects. “The Coliseum is an embodiment of delight that begins and ends well beyond the rise and fall of a stage curtain.”

COX Architecture

John Gollings Photography

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