On September 4, 2006, the Maly Theatre in Moscow celebrated its troupe's 250th anniversary, making it the oldest in Russia. The theatre marked this milestone with the first completed phase of its $9.3 million renovation, made possible by a government grant.

In the first three-month phase, the theatre focused on its lighting and sound. As only minor upgrades had been done since the 1940s, the theatre added 155 miles of electronic communication, thousands more outlets, and a long list of new equipment. The Maly designers want to do more with moving lights and other media in the future, and because Maly's repertory schedule includes multiple productions each week, moving lights are a convenient alternative to refocusing and rehanging each night. The theatre's new moving lights include 48 SiSTEMA Comandor-Es, 48 SiSTEMA Spectrum-E scrollers, two Martin MAC 2000 E Wash, and four Martin MAC 2000 E Performance II.

For control, the house has an ETC Congo lighting console, with a full complement of ETC Sensor®+dimming, ETC DMX Nodes, eight ETC Sensor Advanced dimmer racks with DimStat software, and 40 ETC Source Four® Zoom spotlights. Artistic director Yuri Solomin says of the upgrade, “There is not another dramatic theatre like this one in Russia.”

The new lighting systems were ready for Maly's new season, which opened on October 5 with Grief From the Mind by Aleksandr Griboyedov and will include The Inspector General by Nikolai Gogol, Treachery and Love by Friedrich Schiller, and The Three Sisters by Anton Chekhov. Moscow-based SiSTEMA Stage Equipment installed the lighting system.