Support for LAist comes from
We Explain L.A.
Stay Connected

Share This

Arts and Entertainment

Photos, Video: A Look Back At The Building of Walt Disney Concert Hall

Stories like these are only possible with your help!
Your donation today keeps LAist independent, ready to meet the needs of our city, and paywall free. Thank you for your partnership, we can't do this without you.

This month, the iconic Walt Disney Concert Hall in Downtown Los Angeles celebrates its 10th anniversary. We thought we'd take a look back at the venue's journey from dream to plans to construction.

Disney Hall, the concept, dates back to 1987, when Lillian Disney donated $50 million for a performance hall for Angelenos and in honor of Walt Disney's love of the arts. From an initial list of 80 potential architects, Frank Gehry emerged with the project commission. "His work offers a sense of wonder and delight with serious undertones, similar to Disney’s movies," says venue operators The Los Angeles Philharmonic.

The project stalled, but regained steam in 1996. Construction got underway in 1999, and then that wavy metal orb on Grand Avenue, with acoustics designed by Yasuhisa Toyota, opened on October 24, 2003, replacing the Dorothy Chandler Pavilion as the home of the L.A. Philharmonic. (It took some time to iron out the kinks, like when the area residents had to speak up because their homes were bearing the brunt of the heat of the glare from the building.)

Check out this time lapse video showing the concert hall's construction:

Support for LAist comes from