Tonhalle, Zürich

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Tonhalle Zürich.jpg
Great Hall of the Tonhalle
General information
LocationZurich, Switzerland
Coordinates47°21′58″N 8°32′16″E / 47.36611°N 8.53778°E / 47.36611; 8.53778Coordinates: 47°21′58″N 8°32′16″E / 47.36611°N 8.53778°E / 47.36611; 8.53778
Construction started1893 (1893)
Completed1895 (1895)
Design and construction

The Tonhalle is a concert hall in Zurich, home to the Tonhalle Orchester Zürich, one of Switzerland's leading orchestras.[1] The 1455-seat hall, located at Claridenstrasse 7 in Zurich, was inaugurated in 1895 by Johannes Brahms.[2][3] The hall is considered to be "acoustically superb".[4] Since 1939, it is part of the building complex Kongresshaus Zürich.


The Tonhalle was built between 1893 and 1895, and designed by the Viennese architects Ferdinand Fellner and Hermann Helmer, who had built the Zurich Opera House and many theaters and concert halls in Europe. The architects had become especially experienced in acoustics, and also achieved excellent acoustics in the Tonhalle.[5] In his comparison of concert halls and opera houses, Leo Leroy Beranek found the Grosser Saal (Great Hall) "an excellent hall", agreeing with three out of four conductors whom he had interviewed, adding "Music critics have generally given high praise to the acoustics".[6] Johannes Brahms conducted his Triumphlied, Op. 55 for the opening on 19 October 1895.[7]

In 1939, the building was changed to a Kongresszentrum for the Swiss National Exhibition of 1939 [de] by the architectural firm Haefeli Moser Steiger. The two concert halls remained mostly unchanged, protected as a historic monument since 1981.

In 1988, the Tonhalle was equipped with a pipe organ built by the firm Kleuker-Steinmeyer.[8] The organist and organ consultant Jean Guillou was instrumental in its design.[9]

Plans to replace the Kongresshaus with a new convention center were submitted in 2006 but rejected in 2008. The Tonhalle will undergo renovation during the 2013/14 season.[10]


  1. ^ "Tonhalle Orchester Zürich". Retrieved 4 December 2011.
  2. ^ Eckert, Amy; Baker, Mark; McNamee, Dardis (25 May 2011). Frommer's Europe by Rail. John Wiley & Sons. p. 603. ISBN 978-1-118-03350-0. Retrieved 4 December 2011.
  3. ^ "Culture in Zürich". Retrieved 4 December 2011.
  4. ^ Teller, Matthew; Ratcliffe, Lucy; Reynolds, Kev (June 2003). Rough guide to Switzerland. Rough Guides. p. 198. ISBN 978-1-84353-064-0. Retrieved 4 December 2011.
  5. ^ "Ausgewählte Ingenieurbauwerke in der Stadt Zürich / Technischer Bericht" (PDF) (in German). 2008. p. 12ff. Retrieved 5 December 2011.
  6. ^ Leo Leroy Beranek (2004). Concert halls and opera houses: music, acoustics, and architecture. Springer. p. 476. Retrieved 7 December 2011.
  7. ^ "Tonhalle (Zurich, Switzerland)". 2008. Archived from the original on 22 February 2001. Retrieved 7 December 2011.
  8. ^ "1988 Kleuker-Steinmeyer organ at the Tonhalle in Zürich, Switzerland". Retrieved 7 December 2011.
  9. ^ "Jean Guillou". Schott. 2011. Retrieved 7 December 2011.
  10. ^ "Renovation confirmed for Zürich Tonhalle". 27 September 2010. Retrieved 7 December 2011.

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