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Hamburg's spectacular Elbphilharmonie opens for 1st concert

Last Updated Jan 11, 2017 at 10:00 am EDT

In this Jan. 10, 2017 images a laserboard displays a countdown with the words '1 DAY'TO'GO' on the outside of the new Elbphilharmonie concert hall in Hamburg, Germany. The concert hall opens on Jan. 11, 2017. (Christian Charisius/dpa via AP)

BERLIN – Hamburg’s spectacular new Elbphilharmonie concert hall is finally hosting its first concert, several years behind schedule and far over the original budget.

Germany’s president and chancellor are among the guests expected at Wednesday night’s maiden concert, to be conducted by Thomas Hengelbrock.

The landmark building with its wave-shaped roof and shiny glass facades was built on top of a former coffee warehouse jutting out into the harbour of Germany’s second-biggest city. It’s also home to a hotel. Its main concert hall can seat 2,100 people, none more than 30 metres (98 feet) from the conductor.

Construction started in 2007 and was originally supposed to be finished in 2010. The cost to taxpayers climbed from an initially planned 77 million euros to 789 million euros ($835 million).