ETC Illuminates Historic Tallinn Theatre

Estonian 14th century building receives state-of-the-art technology, including a Gio @5 console, ColorSource luminaires and Sensor3 power control from ETC.

The unusually shaped Hobuveski building in Tallinn originally served as a mill and was later used for storage. In 2003, the circular structure was converted into a theatre, and has since become recognised as one of the most extraordinary venues in Europe.

Until recently, the 140-seat venue has relied on makeshift solutions for performances. With no real infrastructure, changing from one production to another involved building a new, temporary lighting and sound system, almost every time. In 2017, the Hobuveski has received the investment and permission it needed to proceed with a major refurbishment. The revamp includes a much-longed-for permanent installation of lighting and audio equipment.

The renovations is a part of a Green Theatre Programme and is designed to meet the latest energy efficiency guidelines. Unsurprisingly, emphasis lies on LED lighting. The package selected comprises around 95 per cent LED luminaires, including 12 ColorSource Spot fixtures from ETC.

Although dimmers were not required for the LED solution, the venue personnel has been keen to retain the option of using tungsten fixtures for some productions. This leads to the addition of an ETC Sensor3 power control system, with ThruPower modules, capable of accommodating all loads – tungsten, LEDs, arc-source movers, and the unknown.

“The decision to use ETC’s ThruPower modules with dimmer and relays offers the option to switch freely between dimmer and hard power,” said Kalle Karindi, from OÜ Focuspoint, the ETC dealer involved in the installation.

In addition to saving time and simplifying the day-to-day operations for the theatre technicians, the solution offers further advantages. “If you consider the expense involved in having separate dimmer and relay racks, including the extra cabling and labour, versus the Sensor3 solution, the cost is comparable,” added Kalle. “Furthermore, the electrical company said it saved at least a week of installation time for everyone involved in the project.”