While older spaces may add a sense of character and class to an event, there are several limitations to operating in a dated environment, all of which can lead to narrow booking opportunities and higher labor costs compared with the competition. By transforming an older building into a modern venue, you’re able to maintain the comfortable, charming atmosphere with an enhanced experience for you and your audiences.
Because many older venues are reconfigured spaces originally meant to be ice rinks and armories, they aren’t designed with rigging in mind. This creates a difficult chain of events for a production crew who must now pre-rig their events ahead of time.
Introducing a subgrid makes your space tremendously easier to rig. By eliminating pre-rigs, subgrid systems can pay for themselves within a year, through an increased revenue from being able to fill more of your calendar and a decline in maintenance costs. These systems are also appealing to promoters and managers who are now able to cut out an extra day of labor thanks to your update.
Of course, no modernization would be complete without introducing new technology. When older venues originally configured their event space, they did so with dated practices and old technology. These dated set-ups can lead to large and often costly rig calls to lower overhead systems any time there’s debris or dust that lands in your already expensive equipment.
With modern technology, such as the Lodestar D8+ hoist by Columbus-McKinnon and soft-limit control systems from Motion Laboratories, you can eliminate the hassle. By combining the D8+ hoist with a soft-limit control system, your operations can shift back under the control of your venue, itself, potentially limiting the need for extensive assistance from outside companies.
The D8+ is approved for overhead lifting without the requirement of using wire rope safety systems. If you hang your speakers using the D8+ hoist, your sound has the ability to move without the added labor of disconnecting everything. Art Zobal provided some helpful commentary on the upgrades brought by the D8+ in one of our older blog posts (click here to check it out).
A soft-limit control systems gives the added freedom of moving your speakers into either a maintenance position or back into a performance position, accordingly, without the concern of finding your right mark when moving it back and forth. The software involved will place your speakers in the right positions, saving you from the frustration that comes after a few dozen “a little to the left”s.
A large number of event spaces, particularly those that have been repurposed from ice rinks, armories and warehouses, are faced with the challenge of too much space. This extra space can drown out even your largest crowds and make your very successful event seem like a washout. Performers can be hesitant to book with your venue for fear of playing to an empty house. You can keep your events looking full and intimate by integrating an arena reduction system.
These systems mask the overwhelming size of your space without taking away from the experience and can either be permanent or temporary based on your needs. By updating to a reduction system, you can customize your space to bring in any act or event, regardless of the size of the crowd they may bring, and open up new possibilities to fill your venue’s calendar of events. The systems, themselves, require little maintenance and can help limit your operation’s maintenance costs overall. If you want to add versatility to your venue, be sure to learn more about what a reduction system can do for you. Click here to read our article about reduction systems.
With the number of event spaces available in today’s modern world, it’s important to consider modernizing your old venue to bring in the performances and the audiences your organization deserves. Incorporating subgrids, arena reduction systems and the right technology will help to set you apart from the competition.