About the SSE Hydro
The SSE Hydro plays host to national and international music megastars as well as global entertainment and sporting events.
With a seated capacity of 12,000, The SSE Hydro augments the SECC’s existing facilities and stages 140+ events annually.
Attracting an audience of more than a million visitors each year, the venue is consistently ranked by Pollstar in the top three arenas globally, alongside iconic venues like Madison Square Garden and The O2.
Since opening in September 2013, The SSE Hydro has staged the 2014 MTV Europe Music Awards, the Ryder Cup Gala Concert and the 2014 BBC Sports Personality of the Year. It was also a venue for the 2014 Commonwealth Games.
London-based Foster + Partners are the architects behind The SSE Hydro.
With an international reputation, Foster + Partners are responsible for breathtaking buildings such as Hong Kong’s Chep Lap Kok Airport, City Hall London, Hearst Tower New York, the Hong Kong and Shanghai Bank, as well as the Bilbao Metro and the SECC’s own iconic Clyde Auditorium.
Foster + Partners were delighted to have been involved in creating The SSE Hydro as a fitting partner to the Clyde Auditorium. The SSE Hydro is an exciting new landmark for a great city and a world-class performance venue for Scotland. Its design strengthens connections to the River Clyde and, along with the Riverside Museum, Trongate 103, Glasgow Science Centre, The Tall Ship, Titan Crane and many other attractions, is central to the Queen’s Dock and riverfront redevelopment.
Built on the site of the former Queen’s Dock, The SSE Hydro is the only UK venue of its scale built specifically for live entertainment. It is the largest entertainment venue in Scotland.
The SSE Hydro has been designed to be flexible, accommodating a wide range of concerts, conferences and events. The seats and staging can be reconfigured to provide a capacity of 12,000 (all seated) or up to 13,000 (seated and standing in performance bowl).
The unique façade of The SSE Hydro, made up of pneumatic translucent cushions, has been made possible by using a special film originally developed for the space industry. This allows natural light to illuminate the foyers during the day and the arena to ‘glow’ at night.
The SSE Hydro has a 125 metre wide roof, with the diagonally latticed steelwork forming a shallow silver dome standing 45 metres at its highest point.
The distinctive elliptical sloping shape of The SSE Hydro was inspired by ancient Greek and Roman amphitheatres. This shape offers the optimum balance of viewing angle and distance from the stage.