"Sony BMG Music Entertainment"
Designer(s): Linda MoreySmith, Andrew Mccann, Graeme Montague, Jennifer Wood, Sophie Fiddling, United States
Category: Interior Design, Professional
About the Artist
MoreySmith - Sony BMG Music Entertainment Limited
9 Derry Street, London, W8 5HY
Completion Date – June 2008
Award-winning London design firm MoreySmith has dramatically changed the face of SONY BMG MUSIC ENTERTAINMENT through a radical transformation of their new 100,000 sq/ft London headquarters on the third and fourth floors of the original Derry and Tom’s department store at 9 Derry Street.
MoreySmith has expertly reconfigured the Grade II* listed Art Deco building, which was little more than a shell when work began in 2007, into a creative and unique open plan warehouse style space for 450 employees. The ambitious undertaking highlights the firm’s trademark ability to marry old with new and has constituted a major structural and design renovation project.
The new ground floor entrance lobby has been carved from the original back stair lobby to provide Sony BMG with their own personal entrance to their floors, and ensure they have presence on the street. Beveled mirror cladding and textured Thalweg panels teamed with the black stone flooring provide an Art Deco feel to this lobby which the listed building consultant was keen to recreate in this area. The large scale multi screen display showing music videos at high volume ensures you come right back to the 21st Century.
The main reception on the 3rd floor is dominated by a suspended tent structure with multiple projected images, both moving and still, allowing Sony to showcase videos and artists (which are easily changed as new material is released). Loud music and moving images combine with the raw finishes, textures and atmospheric lighting to provide the perfect first impression. This is definitely the home of music entertainment!
One of the main constraints of the project was that each floor plate in the building measured approximately 47,000 sq ft, with natural daylight existing only around the perimeter. We removed large sections of the slab between the third and fourth floors (approximately 10% of the total floor area) and introduced bridge links and walk ways. This connected the floors and the various functions to create a ‘Music Emporium’, housing reception rooms, meeting rooms, the café and all 15 labels and departments in one coherent space.
A defining feature of the building has been the creation of these 2 striking double-height atria, the larger of which is the café. These areas are lit from above by a Barrisol ceiling which create the illusion of natural light in the deepest areas of the building. Easily accessible to all employees, the cafe serves as a buzzy lively heart of the building all day long and doubles as a venue for parties and live music showcases in the evenings.
Galvanised Crittall glazing has been juxtaposed with reclaimed timber flooring throughout, and lofty ceilings with exposed services enhance the warehouse feel of the space, providing the perfect backdrop for Sony's 'rock n roll' culture. Record labels are distinguished by their own individual colour schemes, graphics and furniture and each have their own bespoke Crittall glazed entrances.
This project was a great opportunity to persuade Sony to leave their dated offices behind. Traditional partitioned offices have been abandoned in favour of airy open plan workspaces, designed to maximise communication, productivity and daylight. The feel of the office is relaxed and creative and graphics and signage are bold and informal throughout the building.
Multiple meeting and listening rooms form the inner ring around the central atriums leaving the best, brightest space for the open plan areas. The eclectic desking layout creates small 'family groups' for teams and departments, and is interspersed with breakout and meeting areas. Bespoke part height storage divisions house TVs and audio equipment, and feature wallpaper or fabric pinboard panels add a domestic touch which allows staff to personalise their areas.
Environmental awareness was a key component of the original brief and we have integrated a series of ecological additions, including individually controlled energy efficient lighting and locally sourced and reclaimed materials.