Thirty six hours in three minutes: the Octagon, Bolton

We’ve long enjoyed working within the North’s vibrant arts sector… an area where artistic and technological innovation are natural (but sometimes uncommon) bedfellows. So we were very pleased to be invited to bring our experience to bear and develop a solution for the Octagon Theatre, Bolton (described by the Guardian as one of the best, most revitalised regional theatres in the country).

As a forward-looking theatre, working hard to connect with a wider (especially young) audience, they wanted a high impact way to highlight all aspects of the theatre. Traditionally the public tends to focus on the talent onstage, to the detriment of the expert support teams whose stagecraft ensures a smooth, seamless and professional experience. Another key feature of the Octagon is the ability to reconfigure the auditorium in three distinct and highly different layouts, tailored for each performance.

We took the brief and applied our experience to develop an integrated, cost-effective solution to help shine a light behind the scenes at the Octagon – a permanent timelapse feature in the main auditorium. An unobtrusive, user-friendly camera allows the theatre staff to capture performances, rehearsals, training… or in this case, a wholesale reconfiguration of the theatre between performances. Staff can then use this internally, and integrate it with their wider social media strategy… you can view some of the results on their YouTube channel. As you can see, it provides an exciting and compelling visual narrative. Best viewed in HD for the maximum impact!

This integrated, easy-to-use solution was accompanied by comprehensive training, to ensure a value-led package with multiple applications across the theatre. It was great to help focus a spotlight on the talent offstage, as well as those treading the boards…


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