Chris Needle

Consultant and BIM Manager

Chris Needle

Chris started at Theatreplan in 2017 as part of an internship programme and in early 2018 became a member of the permanent team as a Systems Designer. In 2022 he was promoted to the role of Consultant. In that time, Chris has worked extensively on projects in Asia, including East Kowloon Cultural Centre and Hong Kong University of Science and Technology, as well as the lighting systems for the Sydney Opera House and Operaen Copenhagen.

A graduate of Guildhall School of Music and Drama, Chris’s interest in theatre came from his involvement in a Youth Arts Programme when growing up. Originally interested in a career in acting, he found he became more fascinated by the technology happening behind the scenes, so began to focus on stage management and the technical aspects of theatre. At Guildhall he studied Technical Theatre Arts, where he followed the Theatre Technology Pathway which covered Lighting, Sound, Automation and Production Management. 

Whilst at Guildhall, Chris trained in many areas of technical theatre but specialised in production lighting, working as lighting designer for The Crucible, Herons and The (Imaginary) Misogynist; production electrician for Balm in Gilead and Opera Makers; and as a lighting programmer and technician for numerous other productions both at Guildhall and further afield. He has experience working in a variety of performance venues with a wide range of performance driven technology. An interest in architectural lighting led him to complete a work experience programme with BDP Lighting, working on the Theatre Royal Drury Lane restoration, prior to joining Theatreplan.

Most recently, Chris has been designing the production and house lighting systems for projects across the UK as well as the New Territories East Cultural Centre in Fanling.

Current Position
Consultant and BIM Manager

Joined Theatreplan
2017

Qualifications
BA (Hons) Technical Theatre Arts

Professional Association
Member of the Society of Theatre Research

Relevant Projects

Operaen Copenhagen
Operaen, Copenhagen
View Project
East Kowloon Cultural Centre Exterior Night Render
East Kowloon Cultural Centre
View Project
Shaw Auditorium Hong Kong University of Science and Technology
Shaw Auditorium, HKUST
View Project
Kings Theatre Edinburgh
King's Theatre, Edinburgh
View Project
Esplanade Singapore
Esplanade Theatres on the Bay, Singapore
View Project

About Us

Theatreplan is a specialist technical design consultancy, helping to create amazing spaces for performance, around the world.

What We Do

What We Do
We provide the complete range of venue and auditorium planning, and technical design services, including lighting, sound, stage engineering,
AV, digital and communications. We cover all stages of a project, from feasibility and concept design, right through to construction and opening night.

We help design new spaces for performance, wherever live or digital content is shown and created, from concert halls and school theatres, to cinemas and motion capture studios. We also help refurbish historic theatres, and work with some of the world’s largest and most complex performance venues to upgrade their technical facilities.

Our Approach
Your vision, for your performance space, provides the focus for our work. We will closely collaborate with you, and other specialists when working as part of a design team, so we understand what you really need from your space. We will be honest with you about what we think is achievable and the best ways to go about delivering your vision. We will suggest new ideas that may not have been considered before and discuss these ideas with you to ensure they meet your requirements.

Why Choose Theatreplan?
For over 35 years we have designed award winning performing arts venues, and re-imagined existing spaces, for clients around the world. Our specialist venue planners and auditorium designers help create beautiful, bespoke performance spaces, while our stage engineers, lighting, sound, AV and communications consultants, can provide cutting edge technical infrastructure design, having gained their knowledge and expertise through years of experience working in theatres.

We understand practitioners, and what creatives, directors, performers, and technicians need to make their performances thrill, excite and move audiences, with dynamic, flexible spaces that cater for the many and varied requirements for performance today.

We know what audiences want from a venue and how to make that a reality

We always factor in the needs of operators to ensure venues are sustainable for the future.

And we prioritise environmental sustainability throughout every stage of a project, to bring innovative solutions that support sustainable development.

We have an absolute commitment to ensuring client satisfaction and an engaging, fun, and genuinely collaborative approach to the creative process.

We can’t wait to hear about your project. Call us on +44 (0) 20 7841 0440 or get in touch via email: info@theatreplan.com

Our Team

All
Directors
Consultants
Architects/Technical
Operations
Associates
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Michael Atkinson
Michael Atkinson
Executive Director
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Dave Ludlam
Dave Ludlam
Executive Director
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Mathew Smethurst-Evans
Mathew Smethurst-Evans
Executive Director
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Matt Kingslake
Matt Kingslake
Consultant
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Chris Needle
Chris Needle
Consultant and BIM Manager
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Chris Pye
Chris Pye
Senior Associate
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John Whitaker
John Whitaker
Founder Consultant
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Roger Fox
Roger Fox
Founder Consultant
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Kit Lerman
Kit Lerman
Consultant and Head of Audio, Video, Broadcast
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Jibril Muhammad
Jibril Muhammad
Junior Consultant
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Bosco Tan
Bosco Tan
Senior Associate
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Peter Crockett
Peter Crockett
Stage Engineer
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Lara Kerrison
Lara Kerrison
Architect and Theatre Planner
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Barry Pritchard
Barry Pritchard
Senior Associate
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Paolo Ribichescu
Paolo Ribichesu
BIM Architect
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Andrea Sinigaglia
Andrea Sinigaglia
BIM Architect
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Anniek Wassser
Anniek Wasser
Senior Associate
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Amy Hickson
Amy Hickson
Practice Coordinator
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Helen Walker
Helen Walker MBE
Director of Operations

Our Partnerships

Theatreplan is proud to support the following sector organisations

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Theatres Trust 2023
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