RDS Concert Hall


In 2008 the Irish Chamber Orchestra was considering a programme of concerts to be held at the RDS Concert Hall. At an early stage, however, concerns were raised by the ICO over the acoustic performance of the space. The acoustic environment was not quite right for the type of programme typically performed by the ICO.

Working with the RDS and drawing on its close working relationship with the ICO, AWN Consulting provided design advice in respect of improving the room acoustics within the Concert Hall and providing the ICO with an acoustic environment that met its requirements.

Acoustic Analysis

The room acoustic analysis was undertaken using proprietary modelling software (ODEON) with the objective of quantifying the acoustic quality of the space for a variety of different seating and stage layouts.

The acoustic model allowed several important room acoustic parameters to be calculated, including reverberation time, intimacy, clarity and envelopment. It was concluded that the Concert Hall in its existing form did not have adequate reverberation for orchestral music and that there were insufficient lateral reflections to both the audience and the stage. 

In order to improve the room acoustics of the Concert Hall for performances by the ICO several reflective panels were introduced around the room.

Positve Feedback

The refurbished Concert Hall opened in 2009 with very positive feedback from both the ICO and critics alike.

"The acoustic of the RDS venue has definitely been improved in recent years."

Michael Dervan, The Irish Times

"The audience at the RDS cheered it as if they were absolutely certain they'd heard something very special indeed."

Michael Dervan, The Irish Times

"We were treated to a display of bright, brilliant playing with crisp, tightly controlled rhythms and lovely dynamic contrasts."

Declan Townsend, The Examiner




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