In celebration of its 20th Anniversary, Toronto's Roy Thomson Hall opened the Fall 2002 season with a completely renovated concert hall interior, updating look and acoustics to suit resident arts organizations: The Toronto Symphony Orchestra, the Toronto Mendelssohn Choir, and the Toronto International Film Festival. At just over 2800-seats when it originally opened in 1982, the hall was praised for its architecture and good acoustics. However, the Board of the Corporation of Roy Thomson and Massey Halls wished to provide a higher standard of acoustics, and began an aggressive study of the hall's acoustics engaging Artec Consultants of New York. Damian was part of Artec's early team studying Thomson Hall through a series of acoustic measurements, interviews with performers, and physical and computer models. The resulting recommendations led to the formation of a design team which included Tom Payne of Kuwabara, Payne, McKenna, Blumberg group (KPMB) as Architect and Ellis Don as Construction Manager, advising on constructability, cost and schedule from the earliest design meetings. Damian worked alongside Russell Johnson in determining the optimal set of enhancements to the room's acoustics, and led Artec's team during the design, construction phase, and opening events. The resulting Enhancement Program for the Concert Hall installed a series of volume reducing bulkheads at the perimeter of the ceiling, a 2-part motorized acoustic canopy over the stage, motorized acoustic banners to reduce reverberance in amplified events, a conversion from continental to aisle seating on the orchestra level, stage modifications and a number of other improvements to infrastructure, structure and patron amenities. The enhancement has received critical acclaim for improved acoustics and it's architecture and patron facilities.
Location: Toronto, ON, Canada
Architect: Tom Payne (KPBM)
Acoustics and Theatre Consultant: Artec Consultants Inc
Completion Date: 2002
Damian worked alongside Russell Johnson in determining the optimal set of enhancements to the room's acoustics, and led Artec's team during the design, construction phase, and opening events.
“There will be a jewel in the middle of your City.”
- Cecilia Bartoli.
“There was a depth and richness to the sound that surpassed what the original hall was able to offer.”
- William Littler.
“Not just a good hall but a very good hall.”
- Sir Andrew Davis, music director of the Toronto Symphony Orchestra at the time of the hall’s opening.
“The "new" hall is certainly a more lively room for music than the old. There's a deeper pool of resonance in the bass, and a more vibrant tone up top. The sound hangs in the air a bit longer, instead of fleeing before it can be properly savoured.”
- Robert Everett Green, Globe and Mail on Sept 23, 2002.