BIRMINGHAM ROYAL BALLET

With aspirations of creating a world-class centre of excellence as a dance rehearsal facility and also to support the wide range of additional activities expected of a modern arts organisation, Austin-Smith:Lord was appointed by Birmingham Royal Ballet as architect, interior designer and design team leader for the refurbishment of the Birmingham Royal Ballet building.

Birmingham Royal Ballet

Birmingham Royal Ballet

With aspirations of creating a world-class centre of excellence as a dance rehearsal facility and also to support the wide range of additional activities expected of a modern arts organisation, Austin-Smith:Lord was appointed by Birmingham Royal Ballet as architect, interior designer and design team leader for the refurbishment of the Birmingham Royal Ballet building.

The refurbishment included the upgrade of two existing ballet rehearsal studios, the creation of an informal performance venue for audiences of up to 100 people within the existing footprint of the two other rehearsal rooms, the complete replacement of current facilities for dancers’ changing, welfare and rest areas and existing administration offices. The existing reception and main access into the building has also been addressed and improved.

The major priorities that have been achieved include the improvement of the working environment for dancers and admin staff, eradication of existing accessibility difficulties inherent in the existing building, significant upgrade and replacement of existing heating, ventilation and lighting systems to meet 21st Century performance and energy use standards and enhancement of corporate branding and signage on the exterior of the building.

A-S:L produced a fine design for the studio and administration home of Birmingham Royal Ballet. The building required a major overhaul after 25 years of busy use and needed to be brought into the 21st Century. For the sum of £2.7M A-S:L created state of the art dance facilities within the existing building resolving historic ‘navigation’ issues and making the building accessible and open to external users. Significantly, the design was created with sustainability high on the agenda, both in terms of environment and future business needs. The design involved a major technical upgrade to provide the most efficient use of digital equipment to aid teaching and archiving. The net result is a beautiful and inspiring studio building that will set the standard for decades to come.

Christopher Barron – Chief Executive, Birmingham Royal Ballet

LOCATION: BIRMINGHAM

CLIENT: BIRMINGHAM BALLET

VALUE: £2.7m

COMPLETION: 2014
SERVICE: ARCHITECTURE, INTERIOR DESIGN
SECTOR: ARTS & CULTURE

STRUCTURES: ARUP
SERVICES: ARUP
COST CONSULTANT: GLEEDS