The Istana Budaya or The Palace of Culture, founded in September 1999, is Malaysia
's main venue for all types of theatre including musical theatre, operetta, classical concert and opera from local and international performances. It is located next to the National Art Gallery on Jalan Tun Razak in the heart of Kuala Lumpur
Istana Budaya aims to raise the standards of performing arts, develop artistic excellence in theatre, popularise high-quality theatre productions and develop a higher sense of artistic appreciation.
The building was designed by the local architect, Muhammad Kamar Ya'akub. The inspiration for the design is based on a traditional moon kite in flight.The turquoise folds on the roof and the intricate design of the foyer are just two of the interesting features of the building. Istana Budaya’s architecture has intrigued experts and academics.
Until today, although not often, the Istana Budaya has staged notable productions of such operas as The Merry Widow, Tosca, La Bohème, Turandot, Carmen and many more accompanied by the National Symphony Orchestra and Choir.