The architecture of the building is inspired by the 12th-century Nelum Pokuna (lotus pond) in Polonnaruwa. Built by King Parakramabahu the Great, Polonnaruwa’s Nelum Pokuna is shaped as a stylised eight-petalled lotus flower.
The total estimated cost of the project is LKR 3080 million. Government of the People’s Republic of China provided LKR 2430 million out of the total cost of the building.
The building spreads over 14,000 square metres of floor area.
The theatre is equipped with ultra modern facilities such as an auditorium with 1,288 seats, a library, and training facilities. The building features two permanent theatres—the main auditorium and an open-air theatre—and the ability to convert the front steps into an additional open-air theatre.
The 690-square-metre moving stage in the auditorium includes the ability to raise and lower the orchestra pit to and from stage level. There are facilities to conduct educational and research activities. Parking for 500 vehicles, is also available.