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J.R. Clancy wins Live Design Excellence Award for work at Kauffman Center in Kansas City

J. R. Clancy, a designer and manufacturer of theatre rigging, received the 2012 Excellence Award from Live Design magazine for the company's work at the Kauffman Center for the Performing Arts in Kansas City, Missouri.

The award was presented in a ceremony in New York City on Tuesday, May 22. Clancy received the award in the Venues (Theatrical or Performance) category.

Marilyn Larsen, marketing services for J. R. Clancy, was scheduled to receive the award on behalf of Clancy, its employees, Theatre Projects Consultants, and JE Dunn Construction, but flight cancellations prohibited her from attending. "Regardless, it is indeed an honor to accept this award on behalf of a company of which I am so proud to be a part," Larsen said.

Twelve years of planning and construction led to the opening of the Kauffman Center in September 2011, a spectacular 438,500-sq.-ft. steel, marble, and glass complex designed by renowned architect Moshe Safdie. The center created a permanent home for three major arts organizations: the Kansas City Ballet, the Lyric Opera of Kansas City, and the Kansas City Symphony.

Combining the needs of these three disparate companies in one venue required the design of two world-class performance halls: the 1,600-seat Helzberg Hall and the 1,800-seat Muriel Kauffman Theatre.

To provide exquisite acoustics for the symphony and other musical performances, Helzberg Hall contains a 99,570lb. acoustical canopy suspended 50' above the stage. J. R. Clancy supplied the custom rigging for this canopy.

The ballet and opera will perform in the Kauffman Theatre, an 1,800-seat proscenium house with the vineyard-style seating found in Europe's greatest opera houses. The 5,000-sq.-ft. stage features a 74' tall fly tower, with the capacity to fly grand opera set pieces as much as 30' tall, using a 70-lineset counterweight system supplied by J. R. Clancy. The rigging provides the capacity to add 20 more linesets as resident and touring productions require.

A total of 28 variable acoustic banners on custom chain drivers give the Kauffman Theatre the ability to tune the hall for many different kinds of performances. The banners are stored behind the wall and lowered behind the seat backs as needed to optimize the acoustics. The banners can be repositioned using a SceneControl pendant provided by Clancy, which also controls the house curtain.

"We are always gratified when our work is recognized, but this honor comes from our peers in the theatre technology community -- which makes the Excellence award very significant for us," said Mike Murphy, J. R. Clancy president. "We share this honor with the design team on the project, especially the consultants at Theatre Projects and at Nagata Acoustics, with whom we worked very closely on a daily basis."


(23 May 2012)

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