Tokyo Opera City

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Tokyo Opera City

This mixed-use office and entertainment complex is home to the New National Theater, Tokyo (Shin Kokuritsu Gekijo Tokyo), consisting of the 1,814-seat Opera House, the 1,010-seat Playhouse, and an intimate performance space called the Pit, with seating for up to 438. Architect Helmut Jacoby's design for this building, with its reflecting pools, galleries, and granite planes of wall, deserves real plaudits.

Its east side consists of a 54-story office tower flanked by a sunken garden and art gallery on one side and a concert hall on the other. The museum focuses rather narrowly on post–World War II Japanese abstract painting, with its 3,000-piece Terada Collection. The 1,632-seat concert hall is arguably the most impressive classical-music venue in Tokyo, with tiers of polished-oak panels, and excellent acoustics despite the venue's daring vertical design.

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