Cubitt Sessions London, United Kingdom

Cubitt Sessions




Since 2008 U.K. property developer Argent has led the transformation of derelict semi-industrial land surrounding Kings Cross station in central London. It has succeeded in creating a lively new quarter with a mix of residential and commercial buildings, drawing in high-profile residents such as University of Arts, Google, and Universal Music. Key to the vibrancy and attraction of the area is the strategy of hosting pop-up outdoor events – markets, food stalls and notably performances in the newly-formed public squares.

In 2015 Argent launched a summer season of pop-up performances in Lewis Cubbitt Square, dubbed the Cubbitt Sessions which were scheduled at lunchtime and in the early evenings, and spanned across the genres of classical music, immersive theatre, comedy, movement, street culture, experimental jazz, and improvised opera. The performances were staged in the temporary Panarmonium pavilion created by architect Lyn Atelier.

Sound Space Vision was approached by Cubbitt Sessions curator Antony Whitworth-Jones to advise on ways to make the Panarmonium more hospitable for the classical music performances. Following analysis of the Panarmonium and the surrounding open air audience areas, SSV designed a simple but effective acoustic shell within the Panarmonium, and an electroacoustic enhancement system surrounding the audience. Together the solution provides a warm ensemble acoustic for the classical musicians and a more focused and higher-quality sound for the audience.

The first concert presented in 2016 using the acoustic shell was given by the London Sinfonietta and the superior sonics afforded by the shell were well appreciated by musicians and audience alike. With the provision of permanent and pop up outdoor performance spaces becoming increasingly popular in new developments, SSV has the experience and expertise to design and deliver the very highest quality acoustics for both unamplified and amplified outdoor music performance.