Schwimmendes Theater

Spatial Arts and Lightning Design

Since 2014, the Schwerin Residence Ensemble has been on the German tentative list for nomination as a UNESCO World Heritage Site. The 19th century city is characterized by its unique state of preservation, the historicist castle and the exceptional topographical location in the Schwerin lake district.
Every year the “Schlossfestspiele”, a classical open-air festival with 70,000 visitors per year, takes place in the old town center
The World Heritage application collides with the festival. The technical installations significantly affect the historical ensemble, whose authenticity and integrity are essential for a successful application process. A contribution to the solution of the conflict is the Floating Theater: a mobile, wooden open-air theater on the Schwerin Lake, built on 9 coupled barges.

The mobile open-air theater floats for six weeks in the middle of the lake in close visual contact with Schwerin Castle. The festival will thus be given a new venue within the residence ensemble without affecting the built monument.
The theater was built in modules at the construction site and winter storage in the industrial harbor. Steel cables anchor nine moored barges in the lake bed. These driveless barges are empty cargo containers with a high load-bearing capacity, which form the basis for the theater’s floating platform. Two push boats have transported the theater in two parts to a flexible destination chosen by the director of the production. He defines the relationship between the theater, castle, lake and city. Depending on the location, the theater is accessed either by a docked pontoon jetty or by passenger ships that dock at the theater.
Two hours before the performance begins, the 1936 spectators reach the theater and explore it by walking around the arcade and enjoying the views of the lake and the castle.
The translucent awnings, that surround the entire theater, and the fabric panels on the sides of the stands make the Floating Theater look like a diffusely illuminated installation in the lake.
At the end of the season the theater will be divided into two parts. While barges 6-9 with the grandstand section will be brought back to the shipyard, barges 1-5 with the stage section will remain on the Schwerin lake for several weeks as a converted swimming pool.

Schwimmendes Theater
im See
Schwimmendes Theater
Zonierung, Schwimmplattform
Schwimmendes Theater
Schwarzplan, Lageplan, EG
Schwimmendes Theater
Ansicht, Schnitt
Schwimmendes Theater
am Steg
Schwimmendes Theater