Philips Entertainment Lighting Deliver a Symphony of Light for Helsinki Music Centre

15 August 2011,

Philips Entertainment Lighting has delivered a symphony of lighting solutions to concert lighting in the €180 million Helsinki Music Centre. Supplied and installed by Philips Entertainment's Finnish Distributor Hedcom, the key challenge in this state-of-the-art concert hall was to ensure that all lighting fixtures operated silently and efficiently with minimum heat output so as not to interfere with the listening experience of the audience.

Pekka Rytilahti, product manager for Hedcom discusses: "We installed over 150 Philips Entertainment luminaires into the 1700-seat main auditorium and five additional, smaller spaces. The specification included Philips Selecon SPX, Arena, Rama and Pacific fixtures alongside a number of Vari-Lite VL1100AS."

Rytilahti worked closely with the client project manager Antti Rehtijärvi from ISS Proko, theatre consultant Tapio Ilomäki from Akukon Consulting Engineers and lighting manager Antti Silvennoinen from Helsinki Music Centre to design the best solution for the project. "The Philips Entertainment fixtures were chosen because they are silent, low energy and therefore emit less heat. These factors ensure that there is a considerably less impact on the acoustic of the room as a performance progresses," explains Rytilahti.

The new hall was designed very much with the acoustics in mind. Rehtijärvi and Ilomäki worked alongside Yasuhisa Toyota, the Japanese acoustician behind the Walt Disney Concert Hall in Los Angeles and Suntory Hall in Tokyo, to design a lighting scheme that would make a visual impact without making an aural one!

The Music Centre, designed by Finnish architects LPR-arkkitehdit Oy, embraces the clean lines and airy atmosphere of Scandinavian design. Unusually however, the auditorium features double-paned, insulated glass walls, which allow daylight in and the audience to see through to the foyer and into the park beyond. Nevertheless if a blackout is required there are curtains between the glass panels that can be deployed.

Rytilahti continues: "It was crucial that the lighting worked well with the daylight either by emulating it or by being strong enough to contrast with it. Another consideration was that YLE – Finnish Broadcast Company – broadcasts regularly from the main stage. Key to our specification decision was therefore consistent colour temperature and strong efficient output, and so for us the best solution was definitely Philips Entertainment fixtures."

The Helsinki Music Centre hosts performances from chamber music to jazz to electronic. The Philips Entertainment lighting package specified is flexible, efficient and effective and fully capable of taking care of all the venue's lighting needs.