Shaolin Flying Monks Theatre, China
If you’ve not done one yet, indoor skydiving is some of the most fun you can have without being 13,000ft in the air. And guess what? It’s not only average Joes who like to float in mid-air either. Believe it or not, a virtual skydiving amphitheatre has been built in China specifically for Shaolin Monks!
The Shaolin Flying Monks Theatre is located on the hillside of the sacred Songshan Mountain in Central China. Designed by Latvian-based firm Mailitis Architects, the purpose built amphitheatre is used for levitation performances from local monks.
According to the designers, the Shaolin Flying Monks Theatre’s ‘architectural and conceptual image pays respect to the beauty of surrounding nature and the historical heritage of the site.’ The Songshan Mountain is known as the spiritual ‘Centre of Heaven and Earth’ and thus features a significant Buddhist presence, and is home to the Shaolin Monastery.
Constructed using a combination of laser-cut steel and stone steps made from the local quarry, the structure has been developed in the shape of two symbols – mountain and tree – and serves as a platform for any kind of scenic arts focusing especially on flying performances.
The building has four basic zones: exterior surface, the stage, interior area and engine room. The exterior zone works as both an aesthetical and functional aspect with the stair surface designed to continue the topography of territory and also provide large air flows for the wind tunnel engines.
Check out more of Mailitis Architects’ works over at their Website.
Images by Ansis Starks.