The new Lyric Theatre by O’Donnell + Tuomey Architects, overlooking the River Lagan in Belfast, has won this year’s award for the Best Public Building category at the 2011 Brick Awards and went on to beat off hundreds of competitors to take the prestigious Supreme Winner. The brick used was Ibstock Brick, Heritage Red Blend and the specialist brickwork contractor was Gilbert Ash NI Ltd.
“Built on an epic scale the theatre manages to be both heroic and intimate. The interior is well-detailed by utilizing a brick that fits in with the local materials whilst the building fits in brilliantly with the streetscape. The surrounding housing is enhanced by the building’s form and the river is framed from within the building. The natural day lighting within the building is both sustainable and enhances the brickwork. The building is a constant surprise with new spaces at every level, but with a rigorous design giving coherence to the whole. The theatre has been cleverly designed and built to fit in with local materials and housing in the surrounding area. It is truly a community building with outstandingly beautiful interiors which enhances the river landscape.” From the awards citation.
Organised by the Brick Development Association, the annual contest provides the definitive showcase for what brick can achieve. This year, there were a record number of entries, with projects from right across the globe. The Awards were held at the Marriott Grosvenor Square Hotel in London on 2nd November.