As you step into the entrance, warmly welcomed by the smiles of the receptionists, you will experience a different sense of time flowing.
The foyer (lobby)has a refined atmosphere created by the smooth texture of mahoganyandmarble so that you can make yourself comfortable in your seat and enjoy a heart-throbbing concert.The foyer has a bar lounge, gift shop and cloakroom, and is always filled with the buzz of the pleasant conversation of the people awaiting the moments of music. We also offer universally-designed equipment to enable all customers to have a comfortable concert experience.
Our receptionists help customers enjoy concerts to their heart's content.The receptionists, who have received extensive training and acquired a wide range of basic knowledge of hospitality from music itself to emergency response and care, welcome customers at the entrance, look after their luggage, usher them inside the hall, and happily answer questions.
At the cloakroom, you can check your coat and any large bags so that you will be able to enjoy the music in comfort.
The bar Intermezzo* offers beer, wine, whiskey, coffee and tea, as well as ice cream and sandwiches. Suntory Hall is the first venue in Japan to have a bar in the foyer, an innovation that allows customers to relax during intermissions with wine and beer.
*Intermezzo: Means “interlude” in Italian
The gift shop sells Suntory Hall's original products and various goods that focus on and around music. Our exclusive products are the customers' favorites. (Open after doors open until 15 minutes after the end of the concert)
Please take the time to look up at the ceiling of the foyer, where a huge chandelier called
“Symphony of Lights: Hibiki” shines radiantly. It was created by , a world-famous lighting designer.
(width: 3.8 m, depth: 3.3 m, height: 2.4 m) consists of triangular frames embedded with 6,630 pieces of Austrian crystal glass. Each piece represents a drop of distilled alcohol.
A mosaic wall art themed on Hibiki (sound) is installed on the interior wall over the entrance. This was made by the late Teppei Ujiyama, Japan's leading master of abstract painting, in the last year of his life.
A stained glass installation titled "Ritsu" (rhythm) is inlaid at both ends of the wall art as well as at the corridor on the second floor of the Main Hall to bring softened light into the foyer.This artwork is by Keiko Miura, an internationally-acclaimed architectural glass artist.
The late Herbert von Karajan, a world-renowned conductor, so eagerly advocated the vineyard-style auditorium when Suntory Hall was planned and designed, that he even attended the acoustic experiments before its completion.Having conducted his orchestra in the hall, he was greatly impressed by thesuperb quality of the sound of the music and praised its acoustics by comparing the hall to a jewelry box.The following message was presented by Maestro Karajan to Keizo Saji, the founding president of Suntory Hall.
[Message from Karajan]
In May 1988, I conducted a concert in this beautiful Suntory Hall with great delight. In many aspects, this hall reminded me of my beloved Berlin Philharmonic Hall. It is my sincere hope to return to this splendid hall one day. I send my deepest appreciation to my friend Keizo Saji. With the creation of this building, he has made a great contribution to music that will enrich the lives of people in Japan and around the world.
Herbert von Karajan
In October 2006, Suntory Hall partnered with the Society of Friends of Music in Vienna, which owns and manages the MusikvereinSaal (home to the Vienna Philharmonic Orchestra), with the intent to leverage artistic programming and the ideas of the two venues mutually for promoting the musical culture of Austria and Japan. The photograph shows a plaque commemorating the partnership, which is displayed on the wall of the foyer of the Main Hall. (A similar plaque was installed at the Society of Friends of Music in Vienna in February 2007)
[Partnership commemorative plaque]
The Gesellschaft der Musikfreunde in Wien (The Society of Friends of Music in Vienna) and Suntory Hall pledge in this partnership agreement to contribute to the further strengthening cultural ties between Austria and Japan.
Dr. Thomas Angyan,
Intendant of the Society of Friends of Music in Vienna
NobutadaSaji, President of Suntory Hall
ARK Karajan Platz located in front of Suntory Hall was named after the late Herbert von Karajan, a famous conductor who offered advice on the design of Suntory Hall.
The name was adopted in 1998, celebrating the 90th anniversary of Karajan's birth.
There are only three squares in the world that bear Karajan's name: the squares in front of Vienna State Opera (Wiener Staatsoper) and Great Festival Hall (Grosses Festspielhaus) in Salzburg (both are in Austria, Karajan's home country), and ARK Karajan Platz.
ARK Karajan Platz is adorned with a plaque presented by the Karajan Foundation.
In front of the entrance there stands a gold-colored monument themed after "Hibiki" (sound). Semicircular objects of different sizes are juxtaposed, reminiscent of the sound vibrant in the hall. Produced by Takenobu Igarashi, an international graphic designer and sculptor who designed the Suntory Hall logo, the bottom face of the monument is forged in the shape of the hall logo depicting the Chinese character "Hibiki." Its replica is displayed in front of the Backstage Entrance of the hall, showing the "hidden" face of the monument.
A pipe music box is embedded in the upper wall of the main entrance of Suntory Hall.
The wall opens at noon, as well as when the hall opens for the concert, and an old man and a boy—keepers of the vineyard—appear to turn the music box. This music box generates sound by using 37 pipes made from the same material used for the concert organ installed in the Main Hall.
Backstage facilities are comfortably spacious and with well-thought-out arrangement so that the artists can perform in peak condition on stage. There are 10 dressing rooms for the Main Hall, six of which are private rooms. Each dressing room has a different style in accordance with the needs of the artists: a room with a wooden floor ofappropriate resonance, a quiet room with a carpeted floor, a room with a piano, and a room with a shower.
Blue Rose (Small Hall) has four dressing rooms (two of which are private rooms), where the artists can experience the perfect balance of tension and relaxation as with those of the Main Hall.
An artists lounge with a bar counter is located backstage of the Main Hall. Artists can make themselves at home in the lounge during breaks before and after the performance.
On the wall of the lounge are the autographs of many of the artists who performed at Suntory Hall.
It is customary for international orchestra and ensemble members to affix logo stickers on the lockers located beside the lounge in commemoration of visiting Suntory Hall.
One rehearsal room is located in the backstage area for practice and pre-performance checks for concerts at Suntory Hall.It is best used as a rehearsal venue for soloists, chamber ensembles and orchestras.