At West Road, each hirer takes on the full financial responsibility and organisation of the date, arranging your own marketing, box office, and staff (front of house, technical, and backstage). The venue will be staffed by Custodian throughout, taking overall responsibility for the safety of building and audiences.
A standard concert hall booking will generally include the following, in addition to use of the main auditorium:
- use of two small dressing rooms and two lecture rooms as backstage spaces from 5pm on weekdays during the University term, and throughout the booking at all other times
- shared use of the main public foyer
- white overhead lighting
- one/two Steinway model D grand piano (tuning cost not included)
- standard PRS for Music charges
- 120 chairs, 80 music stands and a conductor’s rostrum
- a licensed and staffed bar during the interval of your concert
- use of our PA system with a hand-held wireless mic
- one microphone for house announcements
- two parking spaces
- 8.5 hours' access to the auditorium, to include all get-in and get-out
- one conductor's rostrum
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- Orchestral risers
The concert hall has a number of 4’ square risers available for hire. There are 16x 1’ high, and 16x 2’ high risers. An additional 1’ high conductor’s rostrum is also available.
- 16 risers: 4′ x 4′ x 2′ (1.2m x 1.2m x 0.6m)
- 16 risers: 4′ x 4′ x 1′ (1.2m x 1.2m x 0.3m)
Each will accommodate 3 standing adults or 2 with chairs or instruments.
- Marley flooring
A black Marley dance floor is available for hire, covering the area from the back wall of the stage to the upstage edge of the orchestra pit lid.
- Livestreaming/recording equipment
The Concert Hall features a video streaming system with a number of PZT and fixed cameras available. The controller for the cameras is set up in the production office, situated next to the stage.
The Concert Hall has 2 x wired and 4 x wireless handheld microphones available. An additional 3 wireless lapel microphones are available. One microphone is included in the standard hire charge, others available for cost.
- Projector and screen
The Concert Hall has a data projector permanently set-up at the back of the hall between the lighting and sound desks. A projection screen is mounted upstage and gives a projected image of 6m x 4m (W x H). It is also possible to project directly onto the back wall of the stage.
- Stage extension & orchestra pit
Use of either the stage extension or orchestra pit must be negotiated well in advance of your event as, for health and safety reasons, the lid cannot be lifted at short notice. Use of the stage extension, orchestra pit and risers may be arranged with six weeks’ notice, when circumstances allow and when four strong individuals over the age of 18 are provided and supervised by the Custodian. A permit must be obtained from the Custodian.
What you need to provide
As West Road Concert Hall does not provide any front of house staff, each promoter is responsible for providing sufficient front of house and back stage staff to set up and run your event. You must provide competent stewards over the age of 18 to supervise the entrance and exit of the public through each of the Concert Hall’s four doors in public use. Their major responsibilities include checking tickets, assisting patrons in finding their seats and taking control of their designated area in the event of any evacuation or other emergency. Please see the separate Fire Stewards Information and Instructions document [LINNK] for further information.
You will also be responsible for providing staff to sell programmes or other merchandise.
There will be a Custodian on duty at all times who is able to provide advice on the safe use of in-house equipment and emergency evacuation procedures.
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The Concert Hall seats 499 and the seats are numbered according to a seating plan. Please note that we strongly recommend the use of reserved seating as it facilitates audience seating and improves the chance of disabled patrons securing a seat that is appropriate to their needs. This will also save your stewards having to prevent latecomers from standing in the gangways when the audience is full, which violates the conditions of our Premises Licence.
We recommend that you sell restricted view seats in the balconies at a lower price than others in the auditorium.
When the stage extension is laid, this reduces the capacity to 438.
- Box Office
We do not operate our own box office at West Road, but arrangements can be made with the ADC Theatre or Cambridge Live Tickets to sell tickets on your behalf. We have a box office point in the foyer for sales on the night of the concert, but you will be responsible for making your own float and cash security. For further information, please contact:
We can offer limited help with your event promotion if you provide us with the following:
- 100 x A5 flyers (to be displayed in the Concert Hall foyer)
- 2 x A3 portrait sized posters (for display on noticeboards at the Concert Hall)
- A completed Programme Details Form and high-resolution .jpg image for inclusion in the What’s On section of our website.
We cannot provide a full promotion service so it is your responsibility to arrange marketing for your event.
- Public Liability Insurance
The University has public liability insurance to cover injury, loss or damage resulting from its own negligence. You are also required to hold public liability insurance to cover injury, loss or damage resulting from your and/or your agent’s own negligence with a limit of indemnity of £2m. For further information, please see our Standard Conditions of Hire
If you have asked for our bar to be open the service will usually be provided free of charge. If you cancel your interval at short notice, or if we fail to take £400 inc. VAT during a bar session, we may need to recoup the cost of staffing from you on your final invoice.
The stage is approximately 17.5m wide by 6.9m deep. When the orchestra pit lid is down the depth increases to a maximum of 8.7m. It is possible to further extend the stage to give a total depth of 11.8m but removing rows A-C from the audience seating. The standard configuration is to have the orchestra pit covered and rows A-C in place. lid down, with the stage extension up.
- Sound and lighting
The Concert Hall is equipped with a full stage lighting system, providing an open white wash across the whole stage, controlled via a computerised lighting desk situated at the back of the concert hall. No gels are kept in stock, but all lanterns have gel frames available if colour is needed.
The houselights can be controlled via the lighting desk or via a panel on the wall at the back of the hall.
The Concert Hall is equipped with a small PA suitable for vocal reinforcement. A digital mixing desk is permanently set up at the back of the hall next to the lighting desk. It is possible to record audio directly from the sound desk, or to an SD card via a separate audio recorder. There are four hanging microphones permanently set-up in the hall to capture the audio in the room.