Scene & Heard bespoke member playwrights entrance gate with shadow

Scene & Heard is an award-winning charity and professional theatre company; a treasured community resource and a highly regarded part of the London theatre scene. They are an established participatory arts organisation that has been working in Somers Town since 1999; a Centre of Excellence recognised for best practice in the arts, education, mentoring and volunteering.

Scene & Heard is a unique mentoring charity that partners the inner-city children of Somers Town, London with volunteer arts professionals. The aim of their work is to boost confidence and raise aspiration through realising young imaginations on and off the stage.

Scene & Heard has been a self-funding charity since its creation in 1999. All of their courses, performances and activities are free, ensuring equal access for all. They are reliant on the trusts, foundations, corporations and individuals who believe in their work and fund them either directly or through their in-kind donations.

Scene & Heard is committed to the children of Somers Town, to improving their prospects and providing an environment where they can have fun, learn and grow.

The Challenge

Despite the relatively recent new build and gates, it was clear that the original gates were inappropriate, particularly the use of glass which was repeatedly being smashed. Scene & Heard required two new gates, the main office and the member playwrights entrances. Both areas are open air courtyards with no roof but surrounded by brick walls. The use of glass within the gates seemed unnecessary and an added danger, as was realised with the broken windows. Scene & Heard required Pylon Design to create and produce two bespoke gates that addressed the said issues but also gave Scene & Heard a look that reflected their identity and was equally attractive.

The Solution

The two entrances were identical in size and Pylon Design proposed they followed the same design concept that endorsed the unified identity.

Utilising elements of the Scene & Heard logo, Pylon Design created a theatre based concept of shafts of light as an indication of spot lights beaming down onto a stage illuminating the human figures from the logo. Either side of this was shaped wrought iron replicating opened curtains enhancing the theatre dream.

Instead of using glass, Pylon Design incorporated a range of different sized perforated steel mesh sheets not only to create the depth of field within the design highlighting the shafts of light but also to provide security for the children within the courtyard. Unlike the previous glass gates, the perforated steel mesh sheets created a limited view behind the entrance and a stronger, secure gate that would not get continually smashed. New door handles and locks were added and the existing automated intercom system was used on the main office entrance. Simple, bold typography that followed the shape of the arched gates in 5mm aluminium letters powder coated in black to match the gates completed this unique and elegant design.

The wider opening, the enhanced security, the practicality of the perforated steel mesh sheets and the originality of these bespoke gates has enhanced the attractiveness of the building and endorsed the identity and impact of Scene & Heard.

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