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The Bloomsbury Theatre, part of University College London (UCL), showcases the best of theatre, music, dance, comedy and everything in between, working with students and researchers to bring groundbreaking productions to the stage. It reopened in 2018 following a major renovation project, the final part of which was the installation and commissioning of an EM Acoustics HALO-C loudspeaker system that we worked with them to install.
Adam Broom, our Project & Installations Manager, explains: “There’s a bit of a back story here given that we in fact supplied the system before the renovation. As it made no sense to replace a system that had only just been replaced, it went into storage. Julian Brooks was appointed Technical Manager of The Bloomsbury in 2019 and he soon realised that the system needed some expertise to realise its full potential.”
Having worked together in the past, it was natural for Brooks to turn to Autograph for help. “The HALO-C system was specified originally for live music and stand-up but the diversity of our programme means we really needed a bit more flexibility,” says Brooks. “Also, post-refurb the room was acoustically different and so I called upon Adam for assistance, to improve the capabilities and tuning of our system to handle musical theatre, commercial productions, student shows (as part of the theatre’s connection with UCL) and pretty much anything else we might be asked to do.”
“It was the perfect opportunity to look at the system design again with fresh eyes based on the programme of events the venue caters for in a season, which had definitely evolved since the original system design,” agrees Broom. “We predicted the space in EASE, re-hung and re-tuned the PA, added a pair of EMS-126s, and upgraded the system processing to Q-SYS as it offers a more flexible and unified control platform that suits the venue’s mixed programme and changing technical staff.”
Brooks concurs: “The HALO-C is a good, crisp system and adding a couple of EMS-126s as a L/R circle system has made the coverage really smooth throughout the house. Autograph also assisted us in updating the system processing to Q-SYS which among much else gives us proper time-alignment and presets for different routing options via a custom interface.
The combination of Autograph’s experience and EM’s loudspeakers has allowed us to achieve what we set out to do,” concludes Brooks. “It’s simple and easy to use whilst retaining the flexibility to change things if we need to.”
With grateful thanks to EM Acoustics’ Mike Wheeler for the beautiful images