Lighting the Way at De Montfort Hall


Located in the heart of the city, De Montfort Hall is the largest music and performance venue in Leicester, boasting a capacity of over 2,000. Originally opened in 1913, the grade two listed building has played host to many legendary artists; The Beatles played three concerts there – one after just returning from Hamburg; Bob Dylan performed there as part of his first ever UK tour, and Genesis famously recorded the majority of their 1973 album ‘Genesis Live’ in the building.

Throughout this time, the building has undergone many improvements as it continued to offer both artists and public a top tier venue. More recently, one element of the building was turned to for an upgrade – the house lights.

The Existing Chandeliers

Although distinctive, the chandeliers in the main auditorium – with their seven orbs hanging down from brass stems – were a little tired. The light that they emitted offered a soft mood, but they felt a little dated. Not only that, but the lamps were also constantly blowing, and maintaining them was time consuming for De Montfort Hall technicians. It meant erecting a scaffold and lowering the cluster, which needed a lot of planning and often caused a great deal of disruption.

‘It was becoming frustrating for the team,’ explains Lydia Hawthorn, Business Development Manager for Solotech. ‘Not only was it costly, no sooner had they changed one lamp then another one would blow, which meant that the entire process needed to be carried out again – with all the disruption to go with it. It felt like the guys were constantly chasing their tails!’

The ArcSystem Solution

The solution that Solotech have installed solves all these problems. In place of the unreliable and large chandeliers, 30 custom ArcSystem Pro luminaires now light the way. These are recessed into the ceiling of the auditorium, clearing sight lines, and transform the room completely, adding a contemporary feel to the iconic auditorium. The one-cell luminaire is perfect for areas that require medium to long throw illumination.

Joel Bright explains why they went with the solution.

“We have an ArcSystem for our stage orchestra lighting that has been so reliable, therefore an ArcSystem for the auditorium was a no-brainer. It is specifically developed for auditorium lighting applications where high-quality, extremely accurate and smooth dimming is required. That’s paramount for a venue such as ours as it lends itself to creating a more immersive experience for both the audience and artist.”

The cost saving in maintenance and energy consumption switching to LED has been massive, the crew are so happy to never have to bring another chandelier down to change a bulb!”

Joel Bright, Lead Technician, De Monfort Hall

LED Lighting – Greener and Cleaner

“Not only that, the use of onboard device management in the driver allows all fixtures to be addressed remotely. That really helped us with the installation” adds Lydia Hawthorn. “And because the guys here have switched to LEDs, their maintenance issue is drastically reduced. The Lumiled 1321 has an L70 rating of 50,000 hours. That’s over five and a half years of guaranteed performance, assuming they were in operation 24/7/365!”