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    Seinäjoki City Theatre acquires modern stage technology in an exceptional way

    Renewing the stage technology of a theatre usually means closing the theatre for about two years. In Seinäjoki, a different approach was chosen. Insta Automation will deliver top-class stage technology for the town theatre, which will not be fully closed at any point.

    The main stage of Seinäjoki City Theatre will be renovated. The goal of the renovation is to offer the audience an unforgettable and modern theatre experience. The new technology must be reliable and safe: for instance, the use of floor and ceiling lifts must be absolutely risk-free for the users. During the renovation, stage mechanics and lighting and sound technology, together with their control systems, will be renewed.

    “Difference to the earlier stage mechanics is remarkable in terms of the theatre experience. Add to that a new, state-of-the-art sound system and modern lighting technology, and we are witnessing a great experience”, says Jouni Palovaara, who is responsible for the stage technology.

    A new revolving stage will be installed on the theatre’s main stage. Unlike traditional solutions, it will consist of two parts. Since the revolving stage is not fixed, it can be moved from one stage to another as needed, bringing variety to the stage sets. The floor lifts will work faster and with more precision. The ceiling lifts will each work with their own motor, and can be controlled individually or in groups.

    The theatre will remain open throughout the project

    The staff’s wishes and needs have been taken into account since the project planning phase. The planning work will continue through the year, and the renovation work has been scheduled for the summers of 2018–2020. This guarantees that the theatre will not need to be fully closed for plays and rehearsals at any point.

    “The project will set special requirements for us and the supplier, when the work is scheduled over two years and will be carried out in eight months. However, with this arrangement we do not need to move to temporary premises. A move often has a negative impact on audience numbers”, Palovaara says.

    Insta’s impressive expertise and experience

    Insta Automation was chosen as the supplier through a public call for bids. Insta has a lot of experience of similar projects – such as the renewal of stage mechanics for Helsinki City Theatre, which fulfilled international requirements.

    In addition to the traditional stage mechanics control system, Insta will create a control system for work lights, access lights and blue lights included in the presentation technology at Seinäjoki City Theater. The presentation technology control system delivery will consist of planning, programming, supplying the electric and automation cabinets and lights, and commissioning them.

    The main guidelines were agreed in January. The past summer has contained planning, taking measurements, preparing cables and manufacturing the electric and automation cabinets and equipment. The new floor lifts, general lighting and their control systems are scheduled to be implemented during the summer of 2018.

    “The summer of 2019 will be even more challenging than this summer, but luckily we have more than half a year for planning then. This spring, the schedule has been really tight. We sat down together for the first time in January, and we will start actual work at the beginning of May”, Palovaara says.

    People at both the Seinäjoki City Theatre and Insta Automation are excited about the exceptional and ambitious project.

    “I have heard a lot of positive feedback for Insta Automation's theatre contracts for both the schedule and pricing. I’m fully confident that the project will be implemented successfully and on schedule. Cooperation has been excellent”, Palovaara says.

    Picture: Jukka Kontkanen

     

    Additional information

    Marko Hänninen