Charcoalblue - News

Charcoalblue Celebrates Ten Years - and announces forthcoming events

Charcoalblue 10th birthday partyWe kicked off our 10th Birthday celebrations with a party at the National Theatre's Shed on 31st January. This gave us the perfect opportunity to thank all of you for working with us, to share a drink with friends and colleagues - and even to ponder a few thought provoking questions (downloadable here) posed by the wonderfully talented designer Lucy Osborne.

As our 10th Birthday year lasts for a whole twelve months, we've got many more events planned which we look forward to sharing with you, as well as keeping the debate alive on the future of theatre, performing arts venues and their continued evolution. Oh - and there are some great UK theatre openings to come in 2014!

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Performing Arts Center at the World Trade Center reveals Artistic Team and Vision

Performing Arts Center at WTC sketchConsulting Artistic Director David Lan, Associate Artistic Director Lucy Sexton, Theater Design Consultant Andy Hayles of Charcoalblue, and Board Member Stephen Daldry Are Planning a Global, Flexible, Digitally Connected Cultural and Community Hub.


The Performing Arts Center at the World Trade Center (“the PAC”) today announces the establishment of a core team of artistic leaders: David Lan (Artistic Director of London’s Young Vic) as Consulting Artistic Director; Lucy Sexton (artist, producer, and Director of the New York Dance & Performance Awards (aka The Bessies)) as Associate Artistic Director; and Andy Hayles, Managing Partner of Charcoalblue (London’s National Theatre, Chicago’s Steppenwolf Theatre, and the future home of Brooklyn’s St. Ann’s Warehouse), as theater design consultant.


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Charcoalblue Delivers Lighting, Sound and AV to Doncaster's New Cultural Hub

Cast, DoncasterDoncaster's brand new performance venue 'Cast' is now open featuring a suite of four performance spaces with stage engineering, stagelighting, sound, and AV systems designed and specified by Charcoalblue.
Working alongside specialist architects, RHWL Arts Team, Charcoalblue's brief was to deliver a full technical solution for the spaces, to a predetermined budget and programme, that adequately equipped them for a broad range of users from local drama groups to national productions.


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Charcoalblue Consults on London's new Jewish Community Centre - JW3

JW3, LondonDesigned to create an inclusive gateway to all things Jewish, London's brand new £12 million Jewish Community Centre - JW3 - has opened its doors to offer a wealth of cultural and entertainment spaces - including a Performance Hall designed collaboratively by the project's architects, Lifschutz Davidson Sandilands and theatre consultants Charcoalblue.


Modern, forward thinking and fun, the 268-seat Performance Hall has been created to provide a reconfigurable space for larger events and functions. Charcoalblue's head of technical design, Paul Franklin, advised on the design and fit out of the performance hall and oversaw the works on site during construction.


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Charcoalblue Magic Shines at The Leys School's Prestigious Great Hall

The Leys SchoolProblem-solving theatre consultancy Charcoalblue has collaborated with Bland, Brown and Cole architects to inject its bespoke brand of design sorcery to create Cambridge's The Leys School's new £9m Great Hall.


The focus of Charcoalblue's expertise is the Great Hall's new 320-seat theatre, which incorporates high-spec backstage facilities, technical infrastructure including lighting and sound equipment, a control room and workshop, storage areas and a green room. These will allow the Leys Drama Department and technical staff to operate a fully functional "teaching theatre", with pupils involved in every aspect of productions. The lower seating tier of the theatre is retractable, creating a School Hall which can comfortably seat 600 for a full assembly.


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Charcoalblue Collaborates on Visionary 'Recyclable' Performance Venue

NT Shed, LondonVenue consultancy Charcoalblue has worked with long-term collaborators Haworth Tompkins Architects, in close association with the National Theatre's directors and in-house teams, to design an intimate, exciting, low-energy and sustainable temporary theatre on London's South Bank: The Shed.


Managed for Charcoalblue by Senior Partner Jon Stevens, the project was designed in under six months and built in eight: "This forward-thinking experimental building will serve as a temporary and flexible space during the closure of the Cottesloe Theatre, which is undergoing major refurbishment before reopening as the Dorfman Theatre in Spring 2014 as part of the National Theatre Future project."


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Charcoalblue's Managing Partner made Companion of LIPA

Andy Hayles receives LIPA awardForward-thinking theatre design consultancy Charcoalblue's Managing Partner Andy Hayles has been made a Companion of the Liverpool Institute for Performing Arts.


Hayles was awarded the honour - an accolade given for outstanding achievement in the performing arts, and practical contribution to students' learning - by Sir Paul McCartney at LIPA's summer 2013 graduation ceremony.


'It's been my privilege to contribute to the fantastic Theatre and Performance Technology Course at LIPA over the last few years. Not only are the students highly motivated, but Richard Redrop the course director has woven a fantastic series of seminars together covering auditoria design, acoustics and emerging technology. I am very proud to be play a small part is the course's success!'


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Charcoalblue transforms the cinematic experience for ICA visitors

ICA, London

2012 has bought a fresh new look and feel to the cinemas at the Institute of Contemporary Arts (ICA), the home of the British avant-garde. Between Christmas and New Year, multi award-winning theatre consultancy Charcoalblue ensured that the cinemas were completely transformed and ready to host the 9th London Short Film Festival.


The project brief for Charcoalblue was to design, schedule and manage a comprehensive refurbishment of the main ICA cinemas. The challenge was to ensure it could happen in the short break between Christmas and New Year.


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