Architect Paul Laurendeau won an international design competition for construction of an open-air amphitheatre in Trois-Rivières in 2011. The chosen site is a former industrial area, home to a pulp and paper mill until 2000. The project is part of a wide-ranging strategy including pedestrian paths and public spaces and structures underlining the natural beauty of the site, where the Saint Lawrence and Saint-Maurice rivers flow together. The new building is the fulcrum of the entire project, and quickly became an important urban landmark for the city and a tourist attraction renowned throughout the region.
The big roof, the element characterising the entire project, is supported by eight slender steel columns, 26 m tall and 850 mm in diameter. The roof varies in thickness from 6 metres in the central part to just 6.4 mm at the ends, a solution that helps make it look thinner and more imposing.
Red and black, the colours of the aluminium panels covering the roof and the volumes of the scenery tower, differentiate functions and light up the amphitheatre to underline its role as an urban landmark in the evening.
The building has a capacity of 9000 spectators for outdoor shows and events of various different kinds. The stage is closed in with a monumental thermal door of glass and steel to become a “Cabaret” providing a cultural attraction offering shows for up to 500 spectators between February and May.
The short film Amphithéâtre conveys all the excitement of the construction of the amphitheatre, narrated by the architect, Paul Laurendeau.
Design: Atelier Paul Laurendeau (Paul Laurendeau, François Beauchesne, with Boris Morin-Defoy, Renée-Claude Langlois, Erwan Le Diraison, Gabriel Ostiguy, Claude de Passillé, Robert Mailhot, Étienne Paradis, Maxime Gervais, Joannie Desrochers, Nathalie Lord), www.paullaurendeau.com
Location: Trois-Rivières, Quebec, Canada
Photos: Adrien Williams www.adrienwilliams.com ; Marc Gibert www.adecom.ca
Author: Antti T Seppänen
Camera: Boris Morin-Defoy
Drone: Francis Aubin, Perrin Video