HCMC plans for a new Opera House in the Thu Thiem New Urban Area

The Ho Chi Minh City government has submitted a proposal to the HCMC People’s Council to construct a 1,700-seat theatre in the Thu Thiem New Urban Area in District2. The proposed theatre will be named after the late President Ho Chi Minh and will host ballet, modern dance, opera and symphony orchestra events. 

The HCMC government wants the theatre to become a center and symbol of the city’s commitment to build a cultural infrastructure and is envisioned a state-of-the-art multi-media space. As well as the main theatre, which is being designed for 1,700 guests, there will also be a large meeting hall capable of handling 1,200 people, and a smaller meeting hall for 500 people. 

The Construction Investment Management Board under the Department of Culture and Sports will be the owner of the project, which is slated for completion in 2022. Part of the funds for building the new theatre will come from auctioning land that is located at 23 Le Duan Street in District 1.

During the French colonial period, HCMC was home to three large opera houses, the HCMC Conservatory, the Philharmonic Theater and the Saigon Opera House, however, only the Saigon Opera House is still in use. 

Other theaters that were built after the country’s reunification in the 1970’s, such as the Ben Thanh Theatre in District 1 and the Hoa Binh Theatre in District 10 have become deteriorated. The age of the theatres, the lack of modern theatre technology and the size of the theatres provide limitations on their ability to attract events. 

Based upon the assessment that the city doesn’t have any facilities that are considered of “international standard” the HCMC government has decided that construction of the new HCMC Theatre in the Thu Thiem New Urban Area, will allow the city to have a modern world-class facility to highlight the city’s culture, both past and future. 

When the theater is opened, it is expected to enhance the development of art, dance, music and other forms of multi-media entertainment that will highlight both international and Vietnamese talent. 

For event organizers, the new theatre will be a dream, come true. HCMC has the GEM Center for events that average 500 people and the Saigon Exhibition and Convention Center for large events. However, there are no spaces in the city, with modern theatre lighting and technology for mid-size events for 1,000 ~ 1,500 people and many event organizers are already planning for the types of events that they will hold in the new facility when it comes online.