Volksbühne Berlin – Innovative d&b technology ‘removes walls’.

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The Volksbühne, which loosely translates as ‘community stage’, is one of the oldest and most traditional theaters to be found in Berlin. Built in 1914, the venue has held a special place in the cultural landscape of the German capital for over a century. With around 850 seats, it is known by its audiences for developing new forms of performance and directing. 

d&b loudspeakers have been facilitating the daring nature of this theater for more than thirty years. The original system is still in working order, but now serves as a flexible mobile extension to the newly installed system.

“In all the years I have worked with d&b, the systems have never let us down,” confirms Klaus Dobbrick, Head of AV at the Volksbühne.
“In addition to the excellent sound, it is precisely this reliability that was decisive in the Volksbühne’s decision to stay with d&b. The original F1220s are a case in point; they still work, and they were installed shortly after the fall of the Berlin Wall.”
A symbolic date for an establishment that prides itself on its political theater.

Throughout the course of its existence, the Volksbühne has steadily expanded its program to include dance, music, party nights, cinema screenings, and visual as well as digital art exhibitions - breaking with tradition and purely spoken word productions. Strong directors, authors and artists are constantly pushing the boundaries of contemporary performance, experimenting with new content as well as new spatial arrangements.

To realize the creative vision of such innovative thinking, the right technical infrastructure was needed to ensure the theater could offer the necessary technical flexibility. As a result it recently invested in a major refurbishment and upgrade, choosing some of the most advanced equipment available - including a new sound system.

The semi-dome-shaped stage backdrop and demanding acoustics of the hall have always presented a technical challenge. To finally overcome these, d&b partner, Amptown System Company, together with the theater’s technical team, designed a loudspeaker system comprising a V-Series line array configuration coupled with ArrayProcessing; an A-Series center cluster, and a horizontal V-SUB array situated in the portal bridge. The resulting significant improvements in direct sound distribution can be experienced in every seat. 

“This is an incredibly precise system that requires detailed analysis of the room and its weak points,” says Dobbrick. “But once you have done this initial work it absolutely eradicates any previous weak points of the room with stunning results."

The accuracy and coverage of the V-Series looks set to be another long term success story. "The Volksbühne has a very special position in Berlin's cultural scene and we are pleased that we were able to contribute to it with our comprehensive services,” concludes Amptown System Company’s Managing Director, Malte Polli-Holstein. “The theater can now continue its role in a new light, or better - with a new sound."

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