Norwich Theatre Royal is open 7 days a week and has up to three shows a day. The theatre can hold around 1300 theatregoers who range from school children, occasional visitors through to seasoned spectators (Friends of Norwich Theatre).
What needed to be done?
Norwich Theatre Royal wanted to make the time spent before the shows more interesting for its audiences by informing them of the variety of activities around the building during the day, such as functions, meetings, art exhibitions, school's tours etc. It also wanted to build its relationships with local businesses through sponsorship.
How to do it?
By installing prominently located screens and a Digital Signage Network all the theatre's requirements could be met. ONELAN's Net-Top-Boxes (NTBs) were chosen as the Digital Signage solution, due to their flexible scaling options and the layout designs available. The ONELAN NTBs allow a screen to be divided up into different Zones, enabling different media formats to be shown. The Theatre decided to keep a simple format of JPEG images and scrolling text. To reach such a large audience the location of the screens was very important. The key visual points were a variety of Front of House locations and the Function Rooms.
These locations were chosen due to the high footfall through these areas. Five screens were placed Front of House, two in the main Entrance near the restaurant, one in the corridor leading to the lower stalls and two in the foyer area to the upper stalls near the bar. These screens keep theatre-goers updated on special effects in the show which might affect them, inform them when the show will finish, who the cast is and make them aware of the facilities at the theatre such as food and drink.
A further two screens were placed in the function rooms. The ONELAN system allows the Theatre to welcome people to the numerous events held at the venue, direct them to the appropriate room and acknowledge and promote their supporters. Once in the function rooms the plasma screens could then be used for their own presentations or show DVDs in the room.
The ONELAN Digital Signage solution has been well received by all the stakeholders, and has been a benefit to all concerned. Audiences have been kept up-to-date, local businesses have gained exposure and the Theatre has been able to update the information instantaneously with no messy crossing out or extra bits of paper. A Digital Signage show worthy of a standing ovation.
"The ONELAN system offers us a new facility to welcome people to the theatre and to give them the information they need about the performance or the event they are attending. At the same time we can recognise and thank our sponsors, promote forthcoming productions and make special announcements. The system is flexible enough to show a variety of media and can be scheduled to show the relevant information at the appropriate time. It's ability to be time sensitive is extremely useful for us and we can see ways to use it more and more in response to the ever changing functions of the building at the various times of day and night". Jane Claridge, General Manager, Norwich Theatre Royal.