S E U N G H O IK O O
STRADEUM is like one large musical instrument. It is a container that many artists and music lovers illuminate, and fill with their zest and love. STRADEUM provides a space that allows you to focus on sound, and the love of music, by expressing the depth of material, as well as light and shadow in the concept of spatial design.
The facade of STRADEUM, as viewed from the outside, exhibits the structure of a screen wall made with alternately stacked wood blocks. This causes shadows of varying lengths to be cast, depending on the angle of the sun. At night, the wall is illuminated with lights that highlight its gentle texture, so it appears as if the facade is telling us its previously untold story.
The interior space of STRADEUM, which is a renovation of the previous building, demonstrates the diagonal linearity of light and shadows through the design philosophy of Astell & Kern. The diagonal lines created by light can be seen on the curved wall surface that serves as a reflection board inside the studio. In addition, these lines can be spotted in the design of the personal Music Rooms, located in the basement, as well as the entrance of the restroom on the 1st floor.
The Sound Gallery, the Music Rooms, the Studio, the Control Room, and the open-air Rooftop Lounge are each situated on a separate floor. In other words, different areas are laid out according to different space conditions and lighting environments, to experience music through a variety of environments. The purpose of this layout is to meet each person’s demands in enjoying and sharing music individually, or in groups. Moreover, the efforts of consultants who specialize in acoustic equipment, lighting, machines, electricity, and structure, focused on creating an environment where people can experience sound and music most comfortably, and in the most pleasant manner.
Ultimately, it is the people who fill the space. Which music lover’s memories will remain in STRADEUM?
S A M T O Y O S H I M A
Up to this day, I have designed 300 studios around the world. I designed Abbey Road Studios in London, which is most notable for being the venue for innovative recording techniques adopted by the Beatles. I was also engaged in designing Townhouse Studios and Olympic Studios owned by Virgin Records as well as five studios of Metropolis Studios, one of the most famous studios in London. In addition, I designed artists’ individual studios including those of top artists like Sting, George Michael, Genesis, Enya, and more. There are many great spaces in the world, but no other space is comparable to STRADEUM from my view.
STRADEUM had a big challenge: it had to serve as a concert hall and a recording studio at the same time. Special devices were necessary because I had to design small spaces by remodeling the existing building.
When entering the STRADEUM Studio, you would see small window-like things on the wall. They comprise the Variable Acoustic System (VAS), a special acoustic system that I keep at my disposal. To put it simply, they are acoustic boards intended to provide sound insulation. When reverberation time is required to last long for effectively holding events, such as a concert, the acoustic boards are closed. On the other hand, when it is necessary to reduce reverberation time for events that require sound insulation, such as recording, these boards are opened.
Another feature of this studio is its interior design that looks like chima jeogori (Korean women's outfit that consists of a chima skirt and jeogori top). I came up with this form in consideration of the basic shape of the studio space and Oriental costumes. This structure makes the interior surface of the studio highly complex, which causes sounds to be dispersed well. This allows pleasant and natural sound to be heard throughout the space.
Ultimately, the STRADEUM Studio has been created as a venue that can serve as both a recording studio and a concert hall, as planned. Personally, I am satisfied with the degree of completion of this space. The STRADEUM Studio is a space for musicians and their audience. Musicians can immediately feel the audience’s response, and the audience can immerse themselves in the sound of the musicians and ask them questions about their performances. In this space, both parties can directly face each other and achieve effective communication. I hope that through STRADEUM Studio, you will be more familiar and closer to music.