Jenny Belzberg Theatre
The Banff Centre in the Canadian Rockies is known and respected worldwide as place of artistic inspiration and creativity. Having worked with many artists who have contributed to the amazing work done at the Banff Centre, SSV has now had the opportunity to contribute to the Banff Centre itself. Completed during the pandemic in 2020, the Eric Harvey Theatre has been transformed into the Jenny Belzberg Theatre.
Led by architect KPMB, the project involved reducing the size and changing the shape of the auditorium to increase intimacy and enhance artistic communication between performers and audience. New wood walls surround the audience, with carefully sculpted geometry and texture intended to scatter sound evenly throughout the venue, strike the right balance between acoustical liveness and control. New control rooms, new seats and quieter ventilation have improved audience comfort and operational efficiency.
SSV also prepared an acoustical concept design for a new concert shell, so that the prestigious Banff International String Quartet Competition can be best appreciated in the improved acoustics of the theatre. Portable stage panels may be positioned flexibly to suit the size and genre of the ensembles on stage, projecting more sound to the audience and aiding communication and hearing between musicians. This should be installed in Spring 2022.
The project includes a significant upgrade to the theatre’s existing Meyer Sound audio system, providing a state of the art surround sound experience, collaborating with KPMB Architects to artfully conceal the surround speakers behind acoustically transparent yet visually opaque screens.
All in all, the renovation has succeeded in making the space more intimate, bringing the audience closer together, closer to the stage and to the performers.