Bonn's Pantheon Theater relocates with ETC upgrade
Founded in 1987, the Pantheon Theater in Bonn, Germany, recently moved to a new, larger location within the city. The nationally renowned venue seized the opportunity to combine the relocation with an update to its lighting system.
“The lighting system in the original venue included some fixtures that were 40 years old,” says Markus Friele, an independent technical consultant and lighting technician, who was instrumental in the project. Although the fixtures were still operational, they were far from ideal. In particular, they were not energy efficient and, in terms of brightness, they paled in comparison to modern systems. “It very quickly became clear that it was time to move to an LED-based lighting rig,” adds Friele.
The new system had to meet some demanding criteria. In addition to excellent performance and reliability, it had to be integrated into the existing lighting framework. “The Pantheon is a receiving house, which means there’s a new production almost every day," explains Friele. Consequently, the solution had to be both user-friendly and sufficiently flexible to accommodate a new lighting concept on an almost daily basis. It was crucial to select equipment that both venue staff and guest technicians would be able to get to grips with as quickly as possible.
The decision-making process was facilitated by Werning Theatertechnik, an ETC sales partner, who supplied Friele with several demo units. “ETC fixtures were the obvious choice, specifically the Colorsource Spot. It’s a modern, efficient tool with countless possibilities,” remarks Friele. Ultimately, the theater opted to invest in ten ColorSource Spot fixtures – six profiles with fixed focus, and four with Fresnel adapters.
Crisp projection, energy savings of up to 80 per cent, and excellent handling properties are among the attributes of the ColorSource fixtures that particularly appealed to Friele. “Furthermore, we can easily operate in colour change mode,” he says. “The desired colours can be conveniently selected directly from the console.” To achieve this, only a single channel is needed, so it’s possible even with small lighting control desks. For the many guest technicians this is a big advantage: "You don’t have to spend a lot of time patching or worrying about the integration of the lamps,” he adds. “It all works quickly and smoothly. Even for the building technicians, some activities – like filtering – are now a thing of the past, and they don’t have to worry about bulbs anymore either."
The new system has been well-received by both the venue and visiting productions. Friele's conclusion is correspondingly positive: "More power, more options, better performance, and extreme energy savings. It couldn’t be better!"