Arup launches theatre consultancy in Australasia

Posted on Friday, October 31st, 2008

Leading design and consulting firm Arup is expanding its Australasian business to incorporate a specialist theatre consultancy. Arup will offer the full spectrum of theatre design services, including theatre planning and room design, stage equipment, production lighting and audio-visual design.

The new team will sit alongside the highly regarded acoustics business and will form part of Arup’s global network, which incorporates established theatre consultancy practices in Europe and the United States.

The Australasian theatre practice will be led by Don MacLean. Don has 28 years of experience in design, technical direction and project management for performing arts venues. A native of Scotland, Don’s international experience spans four continents, including projects for Universal Studios Recreation Group in Osaka, Euro Disneyland Imagineering in Paris, and the Governor General’s Performing Arts Awards in Ottawa.

“I’m tremendously excited to be joining Arup in Australasia,” Don said. “We are positioned to expand rapidly and, like all of Arup’s businesses, our local team is fully supported by Arup’s global network of skilled professionals.”

Prior to taking up this new challenge, Don worked as Project Administrator for Cirque du Soleil’s new permanent theatre at the Venetian Macau Hotel and Casino. Since 2001, he has overseen completion of five new Cirque du Soleil theatres in Las Vegas, Tokyo and Macau.

“Don is a highly respected consultant in the theatre industry and has contributed, through his leadership of Cirque du Soleil’s technical theatre building projects, to the advancement of performing arts design,” said David Taylor, leader of Arup’s performing arts business in the Americas. “We are excited to have him in a senior position in Arup’s global arts team.”

Don joins a team of Arup consultants who have been responsible for the delivery of several iconic performing arts venues, including the MRC/MTC Theatre project in Melbourne, Fusionopolis Theatre in Singapore and the refurbishment of the Opera Theatre at the Seoul Arts Centre.

Andrew Nicol, leader of Arup’s acoustics business in Australasia said, “Gaining such a well recognised figure will reinforce Arup’s leadership in arts-related projects in the region.”