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Equipment Installation Services


The correct installation of equipment in a performing arts facility, irrespective of whether its a small school drama studio or a major metropolitan theatre, is critical to the safety and proper functionality of the facility for users and audience alike.

At Adena, we pride ourselves on delivering a high standard of workmanship, firstly to design the systems you require and then to carry out the actual installation work for you.

Here are some of the installation issues that we can help with...

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Electricity Supply

Theatrical equipment, stage lighting in particular, uses a lot of electricity. Installations in very small theatres or small school halls might suffice with only a couple of 3-phase 32-amp outlets for stage lighting dimmers but most installations will need more, much more. The mains power supply into the building must be capable of carrying the necessary load. We can calculate the load for your new theatrical equipment installation so your electrical engineer can factor this into the total building load calculations to ensure the mains supply for your new facility will be adequate.

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Position of Main Switchboard and Stage Lighting Dimmers

A lot of permanent wiring is required between the main switchboard, stage lighting dimmers and stage lighting positions in the theatre. This wiring is both essential and a substantial cost factor in any performing arts facility. The only realistic way to minimise this cost is by good installation design that keeps the cable lengths as short as practical, preferably by placing the main switchboard and stage lighting dimmers together in a secure room that is close to the stage.

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Position of Stage Luminaires

The position of stage luminaires (lights) relative to the stage is critical and usually varies from one production to another. To enable luminaires to be hung where needed and moved about as necessary, a number of lighting bars and their associated electrical wiring will be needed. These lighting bars must be installed at the optimum positions in the theatre facility and there must be adequate structural strength in the building to safely support the weight, typically 200kg to 400kg per bar, of all the bars when fully loaded with luminaires. When designing your installation we use software tools and our experience to determine the optimum placement of the lighting bars and a structural engineer will usually be consulted to approve the structural considerations.

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Position of Loudspeakers

The correct positioning of loudspeakers for your sound system is another critical factor that needs to be carefully designed and then correctly installed. Software modeling of the sound propagation in the auditorium is often used to determine the optimum positions to install the loudspeakers. Building structural issues will have to be addressed for any large heavy loudspeaker systems that are being installed.

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Cables and Connector Panels

Selection of the most suitable cable types is another issue that we consider very carefully. The cables used for electrical power circuits have to be the right size for the load they will be carrying. Installation of cables is done carefully to ensure adequate separation is maintained between power cables and other cables that are carrying audio, video and data signals to prevent any of the normal radiated electrical noise from power cables interfering with the signals in other cables. We also carefully consider the number of circuits for stage lighting as well as sound, video and data that should be installed. Installing too many circuits is a waste of money while installing too few circuits reduces the functionality of the theatre facility. Technology is constantly changing too, so cables, especially data cables, are selected and installed to ensure current standards are adequately met while also providing for emerging technologies.

The positions of connector panels that need to be located around the stage, auditorium and control room will be discussed with you to ensure all the various pieces of equipment you will use can be plugged into the theatre systems close to where it will be used bearing in mind that cables crossing the floor present a tripping hazard if people will be walking over them.

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Rigging of Overhead Suspension Systems

This is highly specialised work that is safety critical. Several hundred kilograms of lighting rig crashing down onto an audience, crew or performers is not an acceptable risk, the rig must be safe. Furthermore the rig must be maintained to ensure it stays safe.

The only way you can have confidence that your new installation is safe is to have it carried out by a reputable, experienced theatre rigging contractor. We recommend that you consider this a no-go area for well meaning handy persons, friends of the school and even your friendly local engineering company, none of whom are likely to fully understand what they are dealing with and will probably produce an unsafe installation without realising it.

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Compliance with Regulations and Standards

We put safety first, not just for our staff but for everyone who will use the facilities we install. Every project that we carry out complies with all applicable regulations, NZ and International standards, and theatre best practices. Whilst regulatory compliance is mandatory, compliance with many standards and best practices is voluntary and we know that there are a lot of companies who choose to ignore standards so their quote will be cheaper. We choose to comply with all applicable standards because doing so is in your best interests. Compliance with standards ensures that you will have a system that will work reliably and safely with any professional equipment that is used in your facility both now and into the foreseeable future.