Hidden behind the turbulent Hofplein, you can find the small, striking 1951 church building. We are transforming this last Mennonite church into a hotspot for creating music – from youth orchestra to pop choir. As a guardian of Rotterdam’s cultural heritage, the philanthropic foundation Droom en Daad wants to preserve striking buildings for future generations and give a boost to the cultural sector. With Muziekwerf, we are creating a vibrant new place for young musicians to practice and perform.
In the new design, we place powerful ornaments prominently in space. The expressive chandeliers are revised and soon will light up the ceiling in the Music Hall. The plastered concrete structure – a typical cassette ceiling – forms the expressive foundation for the new hall. The state-of-the-art 1954 Flentrop organ will be retained, offering unique possibilities for young musicians and concerts. To improve light within the building, we use silver velvet curtains and light mirroring glass on the balcony, articulating the post-war reconstruction top parts. Light oak flooring and sound-scattering panels will allow a warm embrace for musicians. These elements form a subtle reference to the wooden church benches that once framed the Church Hall.
We make this post-war gem shine again by transforming the imposing concrete structure to an inviting appearance, allowing comfort to its new users.’
Surrounded by imposing tall buildings, Muziekwerf lies next to tranquil waters. It’s a place to escape the bustling city center and make music together.’
While the music hall is characterized by post-war concrete elements, other spaces have a softer appearance. We blend light oak with the existing wooden elements and brass with the metal chandeliers. Down the foyer, former church benches are transformed into wainscoting and the enlarged windows strengthen the connection with the public square. The consistory will open up for young musicians to easily orient themselves within the building. We ensured a light and fresh interior for safe and comfortable experiences. Along with sounds of music, Muziekwerf will come to life.
For decades this building was meant to be hidden and unseen. We are proud to reinvent this gem into a music hub for the youth.’