A space for the senses, the lobby of the Toronto Centre for the Arts is designed to enhance one's theatrical experience.
A performance begins here. Just inside the front doors, the building rises 60 feet on currents of glass and steel, a pleasant maze of lines and curves. A visual motif resonates high and low. The design, based on the harmonic series or overtones, is a graphic depiction of sound vibrations set into play when a note of music is sounded. This motif or the "physics of music", as Zeidler Roberts insists, is incorporated into the clearstory lobby glass, into the terrazzo floor and carpet patterns - a reminder that this building is not just a venue for the arts but is a conduit of the art itself. Cathedral-like columns splay upward like tree branches subtly supporting the pearlized ceiling. A grand staircase connects a mezzanine to the main floor, a public space surrounded in etched glass and devoted to the experience of theatre goers.
Music and theatre beg social interaction to help define them and the lobby of the Toronto Centre for the Arts is as perfect a venue for critique and mingling as any of its three theatres are for the performances that will inspire them.