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Andy's blog: On our team

04/06/18

The whole team at our London studio last summer.

Who would have thought that in 14 years, we would have gone from 4 friends working out of an improvised makeshift office in the corner of a mate’s ethics business – to 70 theatre, acoustic and digital designers across 6 international studios. It has been quite a ride – and it’s not over yet!

The singular aim of Charcoalblue has been to work on the most exciting projects in the world and have a team at the top of their game who love working with us and our clients. We’re a partnership, literally and figuratively, and we’re all in it for the long-haul.

Everyone is passionate about the trying to make something new – something entirely bespoke for each of our singular clients is a key driver for our whole team. We fight against there being a ‘Charcoalblue Way’ – unless that theme is restless innovation. Instead, we’re a bunch of expert listeners, really taking the time to hear what a client actually wants, collaborating with the design team, challenging each other and our clients to find the best, most innovative way to bring that vision to life.

“Everyone is passionate about the trying to make something new – something entirely bespoke for each of our singular clients is a key driver for our whole team.”

Andy Hayles, Managing Partner

Some of our Acoustics team gather for a photo.

A few of our theatre design team shuffle in for a photo.

The team take our work seriously and we don’t cut corners. Putting a thousand people in a room they’ve perhaps never been in before, placing a performer on the stage, turning the lights out and not only keeping them safe and environmentally comfortable, but also entertaining them is a unique and ever-demandingly delightful challenge.

What I see across the business is a group of people who like a challenge. The challenge of delivering a space that respects the cultural histories and established traditions of each of those spaces. How we create a space that captures the magic of performance for audiences across the world. Context, geography, history all play a part in delivering a great space. We have to approach a project with respect and with a celebration of that diversity – and by trying to reflect the world of the clients that we serve with our own team.

We set out to be the theatre consultancy that everyone wants to work for and no-one ever wants to leave. We take that ambition seriously and constantly strive to deliver against it. So it’s not surprising that it’s the team that we’ve built of extraordinary designers and administrators over the last 14 years that makes me most proud.

“We have to approach a project with respect and with a celebration of that diversity – and by trying to reflect the world of the clients that we serve with our own team.”

Andy Hayles, Managing Partner

A few of our technical systems design team crowd in for a photo.

Some of our talented stage engineering team gather for a photo.

Our team come from theatre, production and music; and from all over the world. One has a license to drive a barge in Sydney Harbour, another can fly loop the loops and stall spins in a plane, another plays Trombone in a New Jersey funk band, another dedicates their spare time to counselling. We are truly blessed with an eclectic, honourable, gorgeous host of team members.

If you’re at the ITEAC conference this week – do try and find one of our team (there’s lots of us there) and see if you agree!

Andy Hayles, Managing Partner

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John Owens

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