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The seats for the auditorium of Theater Basel's Grosse Bühne were custom-made. Like the predecessor models, they are cantilever chairs – a rare sight in theatres anywhere in the world. The space between the rows was increased, and the seats were widened by a few centimetres. This meant that the seating had to be completely replaced.
Audience seating with 850 cantilever chairs based on design specifications
As the architect Werner Hartmann explains: "Today's audience members are larger on average compared with 40 years ago. To ensure they can still sit comfortably, the seating distribution had to be adjusted."
Designer Daniel Rindlisbacher from Breitblick AG was in charge of the concept stage. First, full-size models were built of three different designs, from which the building owners chose their preferred seating.
Girsberger Customized Furniture was awarded the contract for the detailed planning and production of the chair. The cantilever chairs had to be constructed to high standards in terms of safety, stability, durability and fire prevention, and suitable upholstery materials selected. Further prototypes were then developed, including twelve dummies that underwent additional acoustic tests at EMPA.