Photo Credit: Tina Ramujkić

There are 22 multifunctional halls in Cankarjev dom – a Slovenian congress and cultural institution – which is definitely one of its key advantages in comparison with other congress venues. The knowledge, professionalism and exceptional creativity of the team at Cankarjev dom ensures that every event impresses in a unique way. Of all the halls, the largest, Gallus Hall, stands out and hosts the most demanding and resounding stage events in Slovenia.

A space for top music and theatre shows and a congress venue

Gallus Hall is named after the Slovenian composer Jakob Petelin Gallus (1550-1591), who worked in Moravia and Bohemia, later Czechoslovakia, and was world famous especially for his extensive opus of motets and madrigals. This magnificant space with its diverse auditorium and two balconies, yet with a sophisticated and minimalist style, is surrounded by white marble walls, whilst the wealth of technical resources enables the execution of the most demanding stage performances.

The stage in Gallus Hall is suitable for hosting almost every kind of show: from symphony and chamber music concerts in the acoustic shell, jazz and other kinds of music concerts, opera, ballet and dance performances, to the most challenging theatre and multimedia shows. It is also suitable for large congress events and ceremonies. The hall’s acoustics have been praised by numerous visiting artists who are accustomed to performing in the most prestigious world venues. The magnificent organ, made in the Berlin workshop of Karl Schuke, also adds a special charm.

Photo Credit: CD Congress Centre Ljubljana

The impressive main features of Gallus Hall

  1. The volume and magnificence of the hall
  2. The acoustics
  3. The stage capacity
  4. The organ
Photo Credit: CD Congress Centre Ljubljana

A multifunctional hall for the execution of the most demanding events:

From a technical perspective the hall can be defined as a stage with a proscenium where the basic stage consists of three equal segments that can be moved independently of one another. In addition there is a 17m diameter revolving stage below the base stage, which offers many alternatives for various other productions. The three stage layers can be lowered together or individually to the level of the base stage, with a maximum lifting or lowering speed of 0.25m/s.

Maximum seating capacity: 1,545

Total surface area: 2,000 m²

Stage surface area: 324m² (18 x 18m)

Photo: Tina Ramujkić

When the stage in Gallus Hall becomes an ice rink

On the 11th and 12th November 2017 the stage in Gallus Hall was successfully transformed into an ice rink where the ever popular The Nutcracker by Pyotr Illyich Tchaikovsky was staged by the St. Petersburg state ballet. As many as thirty skaters performed and brought the audience into a timeless world of imagination and festive magic. It took 12-18 people to construct the ice rink and 7 million cubes of ice were used, which, after 20 hours, were transformed into a smooth and ice-cold stage.

Photo Credit: Archive of the CD Congress Centre Ljubljana

The pit – a unique space for events

The part of Gallus Hall that is most hidden and hard to access for visitors is definitely the pit – the area below the main stage – which mainly remains a ‘privilege’ in the domain of technical teams. It is intended for the storage of the acoustic shell and rotating stage. The operation of the stage technology is based on hydraulics, planned and executed by the English manufacturer Tele Stage Associates. This extraordinary space, which measures three-times that of the Gallus Hall stage, can also be transformed into an exceptional space for events, such as the Mercedes-Benz Fashion Week where the new collection by Alberta Ferretti was presented.  Beneath the largest stage in Slovenia a decadent dream landscape with a pool was created. In just a few minutes, using the stage as an elevator, fashion enthusiasts were transported from 20 metres beneath Erjačeva cesta right onto the stage.

Photo: Mercedes-Benz Fashion Week Ljubljana

The organ in Gallus Hall – the largest in this part of Europe

With its four manuals and a pedal keyboard, 73 organ stops and almost 8,000 pipes the organ is a real revelation and challenge for organists, composers, orchestras and conductors. The organ in Gallus Hall is the magnificent opus of Karl Schuke’s Berlin workshop. The approximately ten tonne instrument took almost half-a-year to install, and during the remainder of the year intonation and tuning was carried out. Organ music has become a regular feature of shows in the Gallus Hall at state and other celebrations, congresses, proms and prizegiving ceremonies.

Photo Credit: CD Congress Centre Ljubljana

In 2017 Cankarjev dom was dedicated to Lev Tolstoy, a giant of world literature, and on the stage of Gallus Hall 21 performances of his famous work ‘War and Peace’ were staged, directed by Romun Silviu Purcărete. In 2018 we will mark the 100th anniversary of the death of Ivan Cankar with the festival ‘Cankar about Cankar’. We will begin with a large theatre production by SNG Drama Ljubljana, Ljubljana City Theatre, and Cankarjev dom ‘Pohujšanje v dolini šentflorjanski’ (Scandal in the St. Florian Valley) directed by Eduard Miler, and will conclude the festival with the ceremonious opening in June of an exhibition in Ljubljana City Museum about the writer’s life and his time, titled ‘Cankar and Europe’. In the Cankarjev dom gallery there will be an exhibition about the philosophical and literary influences of his work, which confirm that, in fact, we can talk about an important central European creator in harmony with the most current influences.

Breda Pečovnik, Cankarjev dom.

Director of the Congress-Commercial Programme and Assistant Director General

Photo Credit: Archive of the CD Congress Centre Ljubljana

Did you know?

– That Gallus Hall is equipped with eight translation cubicles.

– That on the second balcony there is a recording studio owned by RTV Slovenia, with sound equipment for the quality recording of events.

– That dance performances require a special dancefloor, which must be laid at least 24 hours prior to the event so that it settles and the performance can be flawlessly executed.

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