Bristol Theatre Royal refurbishes & re-opens
27 September 2012
UK - Bristol's historic Theatre Royal has reopened its newly refurbished auditorium to rapturous applause following a £12m redevelopment, which drew on the expertise of design consultancy Charcoalblue LLP.
The Grade I-listed 1780s Georgian theatre, which is home to Bristol Old Vic, has been sensitively refurbished to upgrade and install modern technology into the original auditorium.
A major element of the brief for the works was to provide up-to-date technology, comfort and improved sightlines whilst working around the original timber structure and delicate plasterwork.
Charcoalblue's work on the theatre involved designing new technical systems, significant refurbishment of the scenery flying system, replacement of the stage grid, new architecturally-integrated lighting positions in the auditorium, completely new lighting and sound installations and new technical control positions, all in close collaboration with the theatre's expert technicians.
"The country's oldest working theatre - and before Tom Morris became artistic director in 2009, one of the most troubled in the land - has flung open its doors to reveal a plush auditorium that restores the intimacy and the vibrancy of the original Georgian template." - Dominic Cavendish, The Telegraph.
Further enhancements designed by Charcoalblue include the introduction of a flexible forestage zone, allowing the recreation of the original Georgian apron stage and enabling the creation of a variable-size orchestra pit as well as the potential for a large standing audience area in front of the stage for promenade-style events.
Charcoalblue also advised ABA Architects on sightlines and functional planning issues, and on the sensitive incorporation of 21st century technical installations into an 18th century auditorium.
"The construction programme on site has been challenging as the building holds a myriad of different snippets of information from the different eras it has been through," says Jon Woodley, senior consultant at Charcoalblue. "Every day little details of its history have been revealed, from stage hands' graffiti from 1869 to four skeletons discovered in the ground outside stage door, as the theatre was originally just outside the city walls where they threw their dead over!
"But Bristol Old Vic has been a complete labour of love for Charcoalblue - it is a world renowned building with a rich tapestry of theatre history. Charcoalblue has had to use innovation at the heart of this project to ensure that 21st century technology equipment can be utilised to ensure that the next chapter of theatre performance in this building can be as exciting as its history."
Emma Stenning, executive director, Bristol Old Vic, concludes, "In the midst of a complex listed building project, which sought to maximise flexibility across a range of formal and informal performance spaces, Charcoalblue was quick to understand our ethos as a producing company and advise our fit out accordingly."
Related Stories from LSi Online
9 May 2013
The Netherlands - On 30 April 2013, Prince Willem-Alexander became the Netherlands first king in more than a century after his mother, Queen Beatrix, abdicated following 33 years on the throne. Taking place in Dutch ... More >>
7 May 2013
Grand Opera - Russia's Mariinsky Theatre in Saint Petersburg has opened a new ballet and opera house with a gala ceremony attended by 2,000 guests. The new building sits beside the historic 19th-Century Mariinsky ... More >>
UK - Building on an unparalleled figure of pre-registrations, PLASA Events welcomed a record number of visitors at the Royal Armouries last week as PLASA Focus: Leeds 2013 opened its doors for two days of unique ... More >>
29 April 2013
Belgium - After more than two years of restoration work, the 1875 built Théatre Royal de Liège, home of the Opéra Royal de Wallonie (ORW), re-opened its doors to the public at the end of last year in ... More >>
UK - In an ongoing commitment to raising the health and safety standards for dancers, Harlequin Floors was exclusive sponsor of the Dance and Lifelong Wellbeing conference which took place on 26 - 28 April at ... More >>
Event Buyers Live (4-5 March 2015)
GEGES 2015 (12-14 March 2015)
Page 54: completion in September 2012 Built in 1766 the Grade I listed Theatre Royal Bristol which forms part
Page 62: plasamegdsbov wwwlsionlinecouk venueinstallation Photo PLASA Media Photo Philip Vile Photo PLASA Media Photo
Page 60: venueinstallation Photo PLASA Media Photo Philip Vile Photo PLASA Media Photo PLASA Media
Page 5: contents Cover Bristol Old Vic | Photo Philip Vile news 8 In the News Latest business news
Page 51: Photo Philip Vile Since 1972 The Bush Theatre London W12 has steadily built a reputation
Page 5: contents Cover SixtySix Booksat the Bush Theatre | photo Philip Vile news 8 Business News LDI Award
Page 50: Photo Philip Vile Photo Philip Vile This page top and right The new Bush Theatre houses its own
Page 122: -Rushton-Read photo: Barry Ryan photo: Philip Vile
Page 118: photo: Philip Vile