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“A classic North American arts centre”

National Arts Centre
Ranked #24 of 257 things to do in Ottawa
Certificate of Excellence
Attraction details
Ottawa, ON Canada
Level Contributor
96 reviews
21 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 45 helpful votes
“A classic North American arts centre”
Reviewed February 15, 2014

Designed by Fred Lebensold (one of North America's leading theatre designers of the time) the building has a premier site in downtown Ottawa, overlooking the Canal, beside the War Memorial, and looking up the Hill to Parliament. The basic building block is a hexagon, so the six-sided theme gets repeated, a lot. There are three theatres and the acoustics in all three are very good to excellent. There is also the Fourth Stage where new stuff is presented. It is basically a concrete box. The main theatre (Southam Hall) seats 2,323, the Theatre 897, and the Studio 300. Although Southam Hall has very good acoustics, I don't particularly like it as I find it too large. But it has to make money and it needs volume to do that. The Theatre is more intimate and allows you to get closer to the performers. Wide and shallow so just about any seat is good. Very good for plays. The Studio is a shoebox type theatre with proscenium arch. Long and narrow so sit at the mid to the front.

Visited January 2014
Thank 2Fiver
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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229 reviews from our community

Visitor rating
Date | Rating
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English first
Ottawa, Canada
Level Contributor
110 reviews
55 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 36 helpful votes
“Chorus singers are a highlight”
Reviewed January 31, 2014

Visited on free Thursday evening and went straight to the chorus singers. Brilliant work of the arts and music. We experienced both the overall sound extravaganza by standing in the middle and then walked around the individual speakers which highlighted each individual singer.
Also visited the Inuit art exhibition which gave an interesting insight to a way of life completely foreign to my own. Well worth a visit.

Visited January 2014
Thank Kezza501
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Toronto, Canada
Level Contributor
107 reviews
29 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 146 helpful votes
“A must see in Ottawa...”
Reviewed January 19, 2014

I would put this attraction on Ottawa's top 10 list when visiting. It may not compare to 'centers' of larger cities however it holds its own.

Visited November 2013
Thank Michael M
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Ottawa, Canada
Level Contributor
5 reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 4 helpful votes
“I'm a Donor”
Reviewed January 14, 2014

I live in Ottawa so it's a good reason to be, but I support my local arts with this great arts center. From concert music to plays, ballet, musicals and more if you love "the arts" as it is classicaly defined you'll want to experience it here while in Ottawa.

Visited October 2013
Thank DenchScience
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Level Contributor
107 reviews
16 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 59 helpful votes
“The NACO is a real gem in Ottawa - add the BNL and its a great evening”
Reviewed January 7, 2014

The Barenaked Ladies and the NAC Orchestra teamed up to present a very entertaining evening just before Christmas. The NAC is a great venue, the Orchestra is always fantastic and the Barenaked Ladies never fail to entertain. I highly recommend the Orchestra to visitors to our city and to those who live here and may not have gone to hear it yet. Tickets may not be possible with some people's budgets but the orchestra has a children's/family series which has very reasonable ticket prices.

Visited December 2013
Thank schnoodleontheroad
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

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