ADC Theatre

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The ADC Theatre is the main student theatre in Cambridge. Officially the building is owned by CUADC and held under trust, but is managed as a department of the University itself. The auditorium has a capacity of 228 and usually hosts two shows a night during University Term, at 7.45pm (mainshow) and 11.00pm (lateshow). The Larkum Studio (capacity 40) and ADC Bar (capacity 50) can also be used for performances. Applications for student productions open about half-way through the term before. Hirers are charged on a box office split system, with the theatre taking 37% of gross income.

The majority of technical info about the ADC can be found on the theatre's website, and it would be silly to duplicate it here (since that would just mean that one place or the other would be likely to become out of date the next time there is a change). But the theatre's website only contains "hard" specifications and so on, not hints and tips on how to achieve things.

General Information

  • The proscenium arch is 21'10" wide and 12'5" high.
  • The maximum stage depth is 36'5".
  • The load-in doors are 3'8" x 7'2" and are on the first floor
  • The auditorium seats 228, and has disabled access.

There are two backstage dressing rooms; one for the mainshow, and one for the lateshow. These are separated by a Green Room with some seating, an audiovisual stage relay, and three toilets. Each dressing room has a shower located off it, as well as two sinks with electric shaver sockets. DR1 also has a washing machine and tumble drier, which are available for use (although are primarily provided for laundering theatre-owned items).

The access to stage from the dressing rooms is to Stage Left. Entrances can be made directly onto the main stage, or onto the forestage through a Juliet. Similar entrances can be made from Stage Right if a get-round is created behind the stage backdrop.

Load-in access is via a straight staircase from the theatre yard, with a 90-degree left turn at the top in order to pass into the front row of the auditorium. Particularly large items of set can be flown onto stage through the stage traps (11'7" x 3'4"). Access should be checked carefully if large items of set are being used.

The venue has a fly tower, with counterweight and hemp systems for flown set. The Theatre owns a selection of flying equipment. There is a fully-equipped workshop for building set, which ADC Theatre and Corpus Playroom shows can use for free.

Room Booking

The Theatre bar, Larkum Studio, dressing rooms and stage area may be used for rehearsals or meetings dependent upon availability. There is an online booking diary where you can check the availability and book space for your show at [1]. You will need to have created an entry on camdram before you can log in to book rooms. This facility is only available for productions taking place at the ADC Theatre.

Productions are allocated 12 hours per week for rehearsals. If you require extra time you should contact the theatre's Production Manager.

Theatre Management

The University employ six members of staff to keep things running smoothly. They are here to help and act to co-ordinate the activities of all those using the Theatre.

  • Theatre Manager
  • Operations Manager
  • Production Manager
  • Technical Manager
  • Office Administrator
  • Box Office Administrator

Technical Details


The ADC Theatre has over 200 lanterns. Control for these provided through an ETC Ion console with a Nomad Puck running tracking backup. There are 138 permanently-installed dimmers and 6 switch circuits, most of which terminate in the patch-bay although some are hard-patched to Front of House positions or Socapex outlets. Up to an additional 6 Strand Act 6 dimmer packs are available from the theatre management, making a total of 174 available channels using in-house equipment. Additional dimmers can be added using D54 or DMX or analogue control.


The main auditorium has a fixed FoH sound rig of paired D&B Ci90 Tops and C7 Sub-bass speakers, mounted either side of the proscenium arch. The mixing position is a control box at the rear of the auditorium, and control is given though a Yamaha CL3. Tie lines are installed to all areas of the stage and auditorium, as well as dressing rooms, FoH and the bar. These terminate in a Bantam patch pannel, along with the mixing desk, in the control box. Amplifiers are located above the auditorium, and can be patched to various Speakon outlets around the stage. The theatre also owns a selection of microphones for instrument and vocal use, several DI boxes and a stage piano. There are 12 Sennheiser G3 Radio Microhpnes.

Production Resources

The Theatre has a sundries store that keeps a stock of useful consumable items that can be purchased by productions. A full stock list and price list can be found on their website.

The ADC has four Computers available for use by anyone putting on a show at the ADC Theatre. All have Adobe Photoshop and InDesign installed. A folder will be created for your show which you should use for storing all files related to your show. These files are accessible from any of the computers. Please do not store files anywhere else on the computers as they are liable to get deleted.

The Theatre has a photocopier that productions are welcome to use. You should have received a four-digit photocopier code, which will allow you to photocopy, print and scan documents as necessary. The printer can produce A5 and A4 booklets as well as A4 and A3 sheets. The user code tracks how many sheets have been printed and we will charge the cost through to the show settlement. We also have a large format printer that produces the A1 posters we use around our Front of House. Productions are welcome to make use of it if needed.

There is a laminator that can be used to laminate posters to be put up around town. It will laminate from anything up to A3. Cable ties for attaching posters to railings can be purchased from Sundries.

The Theatre has a credit account with a number of different companies, including timber merchants and print houses. You can order goods on account by getting an order number from us and telling us your order details. The Theatre will then pay the company from which you have purchased and deduct the relevant amount from your settlement. Deliveries to the theatre should be made between 11am and 7pm any day.