El Cerrito High School
This sophisticated new theatre was planned to serve the high school and the surrounding community. The 600-seat theatre has the aesthetics and theatrical capabilities of a professional theatre, from variable acoustics systems that allow the room to be “tuned” to suit the needs of spoken word events, amplified music and unamplified music of many styles, to a lift which transforms the orchestra pit to a stage extension. The sightlines are excellent on the main floor and the balcony and the backstage amenities include a scene shop, male and female dressing rooms and a green room for performer assembly. The theatre is fully accessible with seating for audience members with mobility issues in the front, middle and balcony and an assistive listening system for the hearing-impaired. The stage and backstage areas and control room are also handicapped-accessible.
The 30’ D x 70’ W stage has a full counterweight system for vertical movement of scenery, backdrops and masking drapes. There are two front-of-house catwalks and box booms for stage lighting in addition to three on-stage electrics battens, drop boxes and a floor trough for the 192-circuit Ethernet-enabled lighting system. Permanent lighting and sound consoles are located in a control room at the rear of the theatre. A portable sound control console allows touring companies and student managers to move the main control room functions by connecting to a floor box in the center of the auditorium. AV systems include the assistive-listening system mentioned above, a distributed intercom system for production communications, main amplification and playback system with delay capabilities, stage page/monitor system throughout, and closed-circuit TV capabilities.
Excellence in Design Award from the National Electrical Contractor Association. 2010
Construction Cost: $54.8M / $270 per SF
203,000 square feet