Sierra Construction Company to Refurbish Legendary John De Silva Theater | Print edition

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3D view of the John De Silva Memorial Theater Project

The John De Silva Memorial Theatre, a monument in Colombo built in 1974 in honor of the playwright credited with the rise of Sinhalese historical drama at the turn of the 20th century, will be given a new lease of life thanks to a complete renovation entrusted to Sierra Construction Ltd.

The Ministry of Cultural Affairs has awarded the design and build contract for Phase II of the renovation project to Sierra Construction Ltd., a leading general engineering and construction company in Sri Lanka. The renovation, based on conceptual studies carried out by the Project Advisory Unit of the Faculty of Architecture of the University of Moratuwa, includes civil works, general engineering, scenic engineering, supply and mechanical and electrical equipment installation, testing, commissioning and maintenance, the company said in a press release.

Commenting on the project, Prasad Erathna, Executive Director of Civil Engineering Sector at Sierra Construction, said, “We are honored to have been selected as the contractor for a project of this nature. The John De Silva Theater has delighted generations of theatergoers and students, and this renovation will see the theater receive the latest equipment and facilities to meet the needs of current and future generations of culture aficionados, keeping the memory of John De Silva alive for posterity. .”

He said the described aim of the theater renovation is to have an international standard platform to bring together actors and other artists involved in the performing arts to further elevate the art of theater on stage. , which has a long history as an art medium that is very close to human beings.

The renovation works, which are expected to be completed by January 2023, involve the design and construction of the scenic engineering, fire detection, alarm and protection systems, air conditioning and ventilation system, electrical and extra low voltage (ELV) system, elevator and hoist systems. , diesel generator, generator/transformer room, photovoltaic solar panel system, water, drainage and stormwater systems, interior works and furniture, sound system, lighting system stage and the stage curtain system, including a variable acoustic solution, soundproofing and acoustic treatment of the walls, acoustic wall panels inside the stage space, acoustic ceiling, the acoustic system of the hall control, the Front of House (FOH) catwalks with suspended structure, the main iron grid above the stage, the soundproofing of the roof and the installation of an airlock and light-locking acoustic doors. The renovation project will meet all environmental and health guidelines in the country, the company said.

Most of the equipment and materials required for the renovation must be imported from leading international suppliers and manufacturers, in order to meet international standards. The company said that sourcing these materials, equipment and specialized items to international standards will play an important role in the execution of the project. Industry experts from France, USA, Singapore and India will collaborate with Sierra on specialized systems for acoustics, stage lighting, stage curtain and moving stage.

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