San Diego Symphony’s New Outdoor Music Destination, The Rady Shell at Jacobs Park

A permanent, design-forward landmark within the city’s waterfront Embarcadero

The first permanent outdoor venue in the San Diego Symphony‘s illustrious, 100-year history, The Rady Shell at Jacobs Park will welcome guests for the first time tomorrow, 6 August. Situated on 3.7 acres, with 360-degree views of downtown, the marina and the bay, the stunning destination was designed by Greg Mueller, CEO and principal of San Diego-based firm Tucker Sadler Architects, with London’s Soundforms contributing performance shell design. The amphitheater will host more than 100 events this season, including outdoor classic concerts programmed by Rafael Payare, the San Diego Symphony’s music director.

The amphitheater’s spellbinding design features a 4,800-square-foot stage enveloped within concentric rings that, at their broadest, stretch 57 feet high and 92 feet wide. Australia-based Fabritecture led the technical design, as well as fabrication and installation. Beyond the visual splendors, the performance shell incorporates two advanced acoustical systems (designed by Salter, under the guidance of sound designer Shawn Murphy) and an advanced LED lighting system developed by Horton Lees Brogden Lighting Design.

“The long-awaited moment has come when we welcome San Diego to this magnificent, one-of-a-kind gathering place we have created for the entire community,” says San Diego Symphony CEO, Martha A Gilmer. “Opening a summer season with rich and varied programming, the Symphony’s first notes at The Rady Shell at Jacobs Park will mark the beginning of a wonderful new experience of music and natural beauty in a city like no other.”

The Rady Shell opens with Payare himself conducting the Symphony, in the world premiere of a commissioned work for orchestra and turntable by Mason Bates, along with a diverse range of accompanying performances. The venue includes flexible seating that can accommodate up to 10,000 guests—but outside of the 1.25-acre audience area, the Symphony manages the walkways and pavilions of the entire picturesque Jacobs Park.

Image courtesy of the San Diego Symphony