When we were appointed to work on the Ruddock Performing Arts Centre, the project was already beset with issues. Another practice had given initial designs to King Edward’s School, but with these over budget the project had ground to a halt. We took on the challenge of reviewing the designs to make the final facilities affordable – without compromising quality.
We knew that we would need to look ahead to avoid problems, and worked closely with a local contractor while we reviewed the existing designs. This extra investment of time early in the process led to a much smoother process, and allowed us to focus on creating the best possible spaces with the budget available.
Pupils from both King Edward’s School and King Edwards VI High School for Girls – both in Birmingham – now have access to a range of spaces for performing, rehearsing, and learning. A spacious central auditorium seats an audience of 400 as well as a full orchestra; grouped around this are a drama studio, a multi-use rehearsal room, several teaching suites, and a feature foyer. We included an outdoor amphitheatre, giving pupils an opportunity to give open-air performances in the summer months.
“We are very pleased to be opening this wonderful new building, which will transform the way performing arts are taught within the schools.”– SARAH EVANS, PRINCIPAL OF KING EDWARD VI HIGH SCHOOL FOR GIRLS