Alaska Center for the Performing Arts, located in Anchorage Alaska, opened its doors to the public in 1988. Until Labor Day of 2007, it had the same stage lighting controls that were put into the building 20 years ago. With FDA’s help, that has now changed.

The Center, designed by Hardy Holzman Pfeiffer Associates, has presented everything from Broadway shows to lecture series, weddings and banquets to ballet and jazz and from classical music to stand up comedians. This world-class facility with its four performance spaces: the 2,000 seat Evangeline Atwood Concert Hall, 700 seat Discovery Theatre, 340 seat Sydney Laurence Theatre, and the Elvera Voth Hall a performance and rehearsal space, as well as adjoining lobbies and support areas, comprises 176,000 square feet and takes up just over one city block.

One of Anchorage’s most unique gathering places, the Alaska Center is where people come to celebrate the performing arts and other important social occasions. Each year the Center hosts over 600 performances and events and draws over 240,000 patrons.

FDA was hired to upgrade the Alaska Center’s obsolete stage lighting controls with a state-of-the art control system to handle the needs of today’s sophisticated Broadway touring shows and local productions. A key goal, said FDA Associate Richard Hoyes, who specified the system, was to keep programming time during costly rehearsals to a minimum. To accomplish this goal FDA specified three of ETC’s new high-end Eos lighting control consoles. This console is designed to handle the most complex lighting rigs with a simple-to-use operating system.
The system includes a fiber-optic backbone between major components, along with an extensive Ethernet network throughout each theatre. This new Ethernet network allows any DMX device to be easily added to the system and be controlled from the lighting control console and gives leased events the flexibility to bring their own lighting control console and DMX devices. A wireless hand-held remote unit allows the stage lighting crew to work throughout facility.

The $750,000 renovation project included the following new components:

Evangeline Atwood Concert Hall

  1. 1 ETC Eos 4000 outputs/parameters lighting control console

1 ETC Eos Remote Processor Unit
1 ETC Eos Radio Focus Remote
1 Lenovo ThinkPad X61 Convertible Tablet PC with ETC Eos Client & ETCNet2 Network configuration software packages and wireless network capacity
2 ETC SmartSwitch with (85) 20A relays
1 Auxiliary Equipment Rack with:
a. 1 ETC Unison ER4 Processor
b. 8 Unison contact interface modules
c. 1 Pathway Connectivity DMX Ultimate Converter
d. 1 Linksys #SRW224P 24-port 10/100 + 2 Gigabit Ethernet switch
e. APC 1500VA uninterruptible power supply
1 Control Booth Equipment Rack with:
a. 1 LINKSYS #SRW224P 24-port 10/100 + 2 Gigabit Ethernet switch
b. 1 Furman PL-8 light module/power conditioner
6 ETCNet3 Portable Four Port Gateway Nodes
1 HP Laser printer with wireless network capacity

Discovery Theatre
1 ETC Eos 4000 outputs/parameters lighting control console
1 ETC Eos Remote Processor Unit
1 ETC Eos Radio Focus Remote
1 Lenovo ThinkPad X61 Convertible Tablet PC with ETC Eos Client & ETCNet Network Configuration software packages and wireless network capacity
2 ETC SmartSwitch with (42) 20A relays
1 Auxiliary Equipment Rack with:
a. 1 ETC Unison ER4 Processor
b. 7 Unison contact interface modules
c. 1 Pathway Connectivity’s DMX Ultimate Converter
d. 1 Linksys #SRW224P 24-port 10/100 + 2 Gigabit Ethernet switch
e. APC 1500VA uninterruptible power supply
1 Control Booth Equipment Rack with:
a. 1 LINKSYS #SRW224P 24-port 10/100 + 2 Gigabit Ethernet switch
b. 1 Furman PL-8 light module/power conditioner
6 ETCNet3 Portable Four Port Gateway Nodes

Sydney Laurence Theatre
1 ETC Eos 4000 outputs/parameters lighting control console
1 ETC Eos Radio Focus Remote
1 ETC Insight 3 lighting control console
1 Lenovo ThinkPad X61 Convertible Tablet PC with ETC Eos Client & ETCNet Network Configuration software packages and wireless network capacity
2 ETC SmartSwitch with (62) 20A relays
1 Auxiliary Equipment Rack with:
a. 1 ETC Unison ER4 Processor
b. 8 Unison contact interface modules
c. 1 Pathway Connectivity’s DMX Ultimate Converter


d. 1 Linksys #SRW224P 24-port 10/100 + 2 Gigabit Ethernet switch
e. APC 1500VA uninterruptible power supply
1 Control Booth Equipment Rack with:
a. 1 LINKSYS #SRW224P 24-port 10/100 + 2 Gigabit Ethernet switch
b. 1 Furman PL-8 light module/power conditioner
3 ETCNet3 Portable Four Port Gateway Nodes

Fred Sager, the Evangeline Atwood Concert Hall’s production manager, said the new system is working flawlessly and he looks forward to utilizing the system to its full potential in the years ahead.