Technical Introduction

All your requirements should be discussed well in advance with the department, so we may best advise you on how to make your event the best it can be, and ensure it meets your budget!

The department is technically responsible for all lighting, sound, a/v, crew, health and safety and production management of three main areas within the complex: O2 Guildhall Southampton, the Solent Suite and the Lecture Theatre - whether serviced directly, or overseeing external companies.

The Lecture Theatre is a 118-seat venue used mostly for meetings and basic lectures. The venue has basic sound, lighting and audio-visual equipment available.

The Solent Suite is a 250 capacity room, which is often also used as an over-spill area for the Guildhall, so on larger events, additional lighting, sound and draping may be brought in. Discos, meetings, exhibitions, trade fairs and small dinner dances are also catered for.

O2 Guildhall Southampton is the main venue where most of the department’s energies are focused. The venue’s main feature is its flexibility, although there is a fixed balcony within the back wall, the main auditorium is flat. Its current maximum standing capacity is 1749, so it puts us on the 2000 capacity touring circuit for Rock and Roll tours - of which we typically do about 30-50 a year. From flat floor, we can go to a fully seated auditorium, with a maximum capacity of 1290. Between the two, we can cover everything from an organ concert, to a seated dinner, student ball, fashion show, dance event, conference or exhibition.

Technically, the venue has a basic infrastructure, predominantly orientated towards touring techniques. The FOH house sound system is capable of covering the entire auditorium, to a very reasonable lever, and is easily complemented with additional boxes for larger shows. Lighting is reasonable with onstage illumination coming from either a grid of open white cyc units for basic events, or a front and back pre-rig truss of Par's and specials. We can supplement all our systems by hiring additional equipment if the client has the budget.

As there is no fly tower, and wing space is minimal, we do not have suitable production facilities for full-scale theatre productions, and as such we do not fabricate staging, costumes or scenery etc.

The department strives to service every event individually; themed events are a speciality, with specific equipment hired in to complement some of the larger events, to the client’s requirements. We also aim to service all private events through the department, and feel we can offer the best service to our clients, with our knowledge of the venue and its capabilities.

The Technical Department covers a very mixed programme of events, from school speech days, to large student balls with flown lighting, sound and theming. Working with clients that are new to running events, clients that have been using the venue annually for many years, through to touring professionals, promoters and self-contained productions.