Esplanade- Theatres on the Bay, Singapore

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Having completed previous projects for the Esplanade in Singapore, including the drapery for the Concert Hall and Foyer Space, J&C Joel was approached in 2018 to carry out further work. After a rigorous selection process, J&C Joel was awarded the contact to replace the curtains with 20 acoustic drapes in the Esplanade Theatre.

Esplanade, in Singapore, opened in 2002 and is now one of the busiest arts centres in the world; producing thousands of shows yearly which vary between music, theatre, visual arts, film and dance. This meant that the drapes produced needed to be suitable for a wide variety of conditions.

This replacement consisted of 20 custom dyed Polyester Trevira CS Sowerby IFR Velvet drapes (VEL700). The final colour was decided through lab dips and colour matches to ensure the correct shade of red. Sowerby IFR velvet is one of J&C Joel’s most luxurious fabric ranges and complimented the venue.

The drapes were sewn with 25% fullness to create a loose rippled effect and increase acoustic absorption properties. The drapes were then sewn with 75mm turn backs on each edge and joined using Velcro to create 10 double layered drapes.  The double layered properties effectively increased the acoustic and blackout performance of the drapes and also meant they could be reversed after a long period of time. During live performances, the acoustic drapes play a part in the overall quality of sound in the venue.

Each drape was headed with eyelets and ties for a sturdy attachment to the stationary bars, which are located around the auditorium. In addition, J&C Joel finished the drapes with a pocket and chain weight sewn into the base.

One of the challenges of the project was to manufacture and dispatch a large quantity of drapes against a short lead time. Ultimately, this culminated in the J&C Joel installation team installing the drapes overnight to ensure that performances were not disrupted.

Alistair Leak, International Sales Executive at J&C Joel commented on the project: “Our sales team worked tirelessly with Manufacturing to ensure these drapes were made exactly to specification and on time. Given the difficulties and size of the project, it was a great success and as you can see the end result was very satisfying. It was great to once again work with such a world-renowned brand such as Esplanade.”