The Jubilee Auditoria Edmonton & Calgary, Canada

Jubilee Halls as renovated


This project was awarded through the highly praised auditoria of the Glenn Gould Studio in the CBC headquarters in Toronto and the ensuing successful auditoria of the Rosza Center at the University of Calgary.

The Jubilee auditoria was to be renovated for the 100 years anniversary of the province of Alberta in 2005. The two halls were opened in 1957 and have served the province well as multipurpose halls about 50 years.
The renovation focused on transforming the auditoria to be excellent for opera and ballet performances for the resident companies and at the same time still being optimal for multipurpose uses such as road-shows, conventions and the like. A challenging project for 2750 seats auditoria

The architect F. Valentine returned with a project for renovating these two halls. You will find them in Beranek's book.
Identical 2.500 seats on three levels. They suffered reverb and early reflections like most other halls from that period with fan-shape and low ceiling designs. This time the architect had to put up a fight to get me as acoustician.
Both Artec and others protested to the government to accept a nobody from Europe. The architect won simply by saying, that he would not accept the job without me as his acoustician.

 

Jubilee Halls, Calgary and Edmonton as original.

 

We introduced a big reverberant chamber above a transparent ceiling, and made sure all surfaces would perform diffuse spreading.
The aim was to create natural acoustics for opera. Both cities had by now concert halls of their own. At the same time we should ensure good conditions for road shows, rock concerts, and other types of gatherings. To accommodate for these uses we designed banner systems for both side walls and the ceiling void.
The halls have a much narrower floor area creating early reflections from the side terraces. A more intimate hall with a satisfying reverb was the result.
The sound technicians were not too happy. They found their new Meyer system, center-right-left positioned like in THX cinemas did not work perfectly with the longer reverb. The curtain system was consequently enlarged. The complaints stopped.

 

Odeon model of design proposal for the halls.

 

This time full scale Odeon testing was used, performed by J.H. Rindel. We broke up the side walls with terraces extending to the first balcony, and further back to the second. We introduced a big reverberant chamber above a transparent ceiling, and made sure all surfaces would perform diffuse spreading. The aim was to create natural acoustics for opera. Both cities had by now concert halls of their own. At the same time we should ensure good conditions for road shows, rock concerts, and other types of gatherings. To accommodate for these uses we designed banner systems for both side walls and the ceiling void.

Enlarge Douglas Welch verdict