Jands supply lighting for the Lend Lease Darling Quarter Theatre

Posted on Tuesday, August 21st, 2012


As part of the new Darling Quarter precinct and in a collaborative effort between Lend Lease and Sydney Harbour Foreshore Authority (SHFA), a new state of the art children’s theatre and performance space has been created. Lend Lease and SHFA jointly selected Monkey Baa Theatre Company as the resident company for the new Lend Lease Darling Quarter Theatre. The venue houses the company’s office, as well as facilitating rehearsals and performances.

The theatre is the only purpose-built performance space for children in Australia and the first major addition to Sydney’s arts infrastructure since Carriageworks, which opened in Redfern in 2007.

The technical fit out of the theatre is a turnkey project Jands completed in partnership with The PA People. Rob Mitchell of RTM International was the theatre consultant engaged by Lend Lease.

An ETC Ion 1000 console with radio focus remote and a remote playback unit for backup was chosen for lighting control. Production and Operations Manager Toby Knyvett has been using it since Monkey Baa moved into the venue earlier this year.

“The Ion is definitely becoming the standard in Australian theatres,” commented Toby. “It offers the best compatibility with what regional theatres have in terms of older and newer generation equipment. It has a traditional theatre style of operation but offers much greater control of moving lights and intelligent fixtures than the older generation of consoles. Our Ion 1000 console has been fantastic.”

The theatre is currently showing ‘Goodbye Jamie Boyd’ with lighting designed by Luiz Pampolha. Goodbye Jamie Boyd requires very detailed timing in its lighting control including lots of part cues and split times plus follow-ons, and Toby reports that the Ion has coped flawlessly.
“The way the console is laid out makes it easy to follow, it’s easy to see which part you are editing,” he added. “We also have a complete Pathport DMX over Ethernet distribution system which is a great partnership with the Ion system. As both the console and the backup unit send DMX over Ethernet, if we were to lose one the take over would be immediate with no external switches, swapping of DMX cables or similar. We even have a level of network redundancy by running two Pathport VIA network switches. The console and the backup unit run into separate VIA switches so in the remote chance one of them goes down, we would still have control of the remaining nodes until we could plug them all across to the remaining switch.“Lighting fixtures include twenty ETC Selador Vivid-R 11” LED luminaires that offer the brilliant, bold saturated colour only LEDs can deliver. Vivid-R combines high-power Luxeon® Rebel LEDs and high-efficiency lenses for a strong, cutting beam of light and maximum colour production. And with the low heat output of the Selador Series, Toby is not in danger of overheating the talent.

“The Vivids have a very theatrical colour palette and flexible lens options,” said Toby. “We can do the saturated looks that are only possible with LED but we haven’t the lost the ability to be more subtle when we need to. And of course the low power consumption is great.”

Monkey Baa also took delivery of twenty-six ETC Source Four Zooms 15-30 degrees, twelve ETC Source Four Zooms 25-50 degrees and twenty-six ETC Source Four Fresnels.

Toby comments “What’s really great is that they all use the same lamp – the HPL750 – which has been very reliable. In fact in the four months that we have been using them we haven’t blown a single lamp! They’re also all the same frame size which makes cutting and ordering gel a lot simpler. All round, I believe they’re a really good investment.”

Twenty-one segments of Jands JLX-Lite lighting bars, a static unit not to be flown, are installed and Jands distributed general purpose power to all of the lighting bars for running gear such as the Selador fixtures. Six of the Jands WMX wall-mounted, 12-channel (2.4KVA) dimmer racks specifically designed for contracting and theatre applications were installed.

Staging elements are fairly simple with no fancy machinery; Jands supplied a drapes package, a cyclorama and rigging points in the ceiling.