Glasgow Royal Concert Hall
Glasgow Royal Concert Hall is an arts venue, in the city of Glasgow, Scotland. It is operated by Glasgow’s Concert Halls, an agency of Glasgow City Council, which also runs Glasgow’s City Halls and Old Fruitmarket venue.

History
Planned as the Glasgow International Concert Hall and constructed in the late 80s, the building was officially opened in October 1990, after what had been a controversial construction programme, beset with technical and financial problems. It was a byproduct of Glasgow's 1990 City of Culture status, and was intended as a replacement for St. Andrews Hall, adjacent to the Mitchell Library, which had been destroyed by fire in 1962. It was seen as a major symbol of the city's regeneration after years of neglect and deprivation. The hall occupies a site at the junction of Buchanan Street and Sauchiehall Street, which was once home to the Glasgow NAAFI, and the former Parliamentary Road, which was rendered derelict after the building of Buchanan bus station in 1978. The development also included plans for a massive shopping mall, which would become the Buchanan Galleries, although it was almost a decade later before this was realised. It is often used for non-music events, such as graduation ceremonies for nearby Glasgow Caledonian University. In addition, the auditorium area is insulated by a massive rubber membrane built into the floor - intended to dampen out noise and vibration from the Subway tracks which run underneath. During the building phase, it attracted much criticism from the press owing to its huge cost and the management of its construction, its over-imposing facade and even the acoustics of the main auditorium have been criticised. The project ran out of money during construction and building work stopped in 1989. The East wall of the building was left without sandstone cladding for the first 6 years of its life, some debate exists over whether this unsightly mess was in anticipation of the Buchanan Galleries which now adjoins onto this part of the building, or whether this was due to the financial problems. It earned the nickname of "Lally's Palais" (Lally's Palace) due to Lord Provost Pat Lally's leading role in the development. The Glasgow International Concert Hall was officially opened on 5 October 1990, by Her Royal Highness The Princess Royal. The Royal Scottish National Orchestra (then the Scottish National Orchestra) gave the very first performance at the Royal Gala Opening Concert, as a showpiece for Glasgow being awarded the European City of Culture. The programme featured two new works by Scottish composers, Carillon by Thomas Wilson and Rainbow 90 by Thea Musgrave, both specially commissioned for the occasion by Glasgow City Council, as well as pieces by Beethoven and Vaughn Williams. The first non-classical concert was by The Blue Nile. After completion, it was granted Royal Status and was renamed Glasgow Royal Concert Hall.

Architecture
It was designed by Sir Leslie Martin and Edinburgh-based company RMJM and partners commenced its construction in 1988. In April 1988, the first stone was laid and it would be 30 months before the final opening in October 1990.

Performance spaces and facilities
The Main Auditorium is the largest performance space in the Glasgow Royal Concert Hall, and can seat 2475 people. Other spaces in the hall include the 500-seat Strathclyde Suite, the Exhibition Hall, and the Buchanan Suite. The hall also has a gift shop, foyers, seven bars, a café bar and a restaurant, The Green Room.

Notable events
It is the Glasgow performance base of the Royal Scottish National Orchestra and has hosted many international orchestras, soloists and conductors, including the Royal Concertgebouw Orchestra, the St. Petersburg Philharmonic Orchestra, National Youth Orchestras of Great Britain and Scotland, Celia Bartoli, Julian Lloyd Webber and Maxim Vengerov. As well as classical music, the hall plays host to opera and ballet, musical theatre, talks, rock and pop, folk, world and country, swing and comedy. It is also the main venue for the Celtic Connections Festival.

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