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Studio Andrew Todd

OLD VIC



OLD VIC
The Old Vic Theatre | Britain | 2004

Category: Culture, Design
Space: Small, Transformation, Interior
Status: Built


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Four years after our initial study of a 'kit of parts' to transform the Old Vic Theatre, the project has become reality. Artistic Director Kevin Spacey took the bold decision to transform his theatre from its familiar Victorian proscenium form into a radical in-the-round configuration. Together with the Old Vic's team we have conceived a modular structure which can be removed and replaced easily during future seasons. We adapted our previous designs from May to June of 2008; prefabrication of the structure began in July, and installation took three weeks in August and September. It conserves close to the existing capacity (850 seats), meaning that the theatre can continue to offer challenging work without subsidy. The space seeks to optimise the existing building's elongated form by bringing all of the audience closer to the action; we have also reconfigured some of the permanent seating to improve sightlines and density in this form and also when the theatre reverts to the original proscenium.

The Old Vic has always seemed a remote, chilly auditorium. But suddenly this transformation brings everyone closer to the action in every sense; and brings each level closer to each other, too. The building feels as if it was always meant to be like this; and not only does it give London its first large-scale in-the-round theatre since the mid-80s, but it also makes this one of most exciting uses of space in town.
The Stage

The Old Vic has had an exhilarating personality-rethink. Taking temporary leave of its traditional end-on proscenium arch set-up, this venerable venue has been reconfigured as an in-the-round theatre. With the floor raised to just below the level of the old dress circle, the actors and the audience, who are arranged right around them, now very much share the same space – a room that is a miraculous combination of intimacy and grandeur.

The Independent



MOVIE:

OLD VIC Movie

INTO THE ROUND CREATING THE CQS SPACE AT THE OLD VIC | AUGUST 2008