Birmingham arts centre The Drum is set to be turned a striking red colour in its first major renovation in decades.
The venue, in Potters Lane in Aston, is to undergo a major extension to increase seating from 350 to 480, while offering additional standing space for up to 1,000 people, up from 750 at present.
The new corrugated roof will be painted red and add 28 feet to the height of the current auditorium, adding more flexibility to the venue.
Jewellery Quarter practice BPN Architects has designed the scheme, continuing a long-standing relationship with the venue having worked on a refurbishment project 20 years ago when The Drum was in its infancy.
Architectural assistant Roan Howard-Jones told the Post: "Our main brief is to increase the capacity of the main auditorium and improve the spaces within the building.
"Because of the building's success and the demand for it, it needs this increase so the project is about making the space more suitable.
"When the main auditorium is full, it tends to overheat so requires cooling fans which present their own noise issues.
"Much of the conversation during the pre-application consultation was about the roof extension and we have fine-tuned it down to the minimum height needed."
Theatretech, the company which helped to design the extension, described the current auditorium as "oppressively low" which did not help the basic acoustics nor the sight lines from the raked seating.
The roof extension will be set back 32 feet from the front of the main building so it does not intrude too much on the neighbouring, Grade II* listed Bartons Arms pub which fronts onto the A34.
Other elements of the renovation include refurbishing the existing first floor hospitality area so guests can look out towards the city and the pub.
There will be an improved technical area and lighting in the second level extension.
A two-storey extension will be built at the back containing a larger seminar and exhibition room and a new multimedia room while other façades will be re-clad to be more in keeping with the building.
New changing rooms will also be installed on the first floor. A planning application has now been lodged with Birmingham City Council and, if funding comes through later this year, work will start in spring 2016.
The site was the home of the Aston Hippodrome between 1908 and 1980 and saw major performers there over the years such as Judy Garland, Morecambe and Wise and Laurel and Hardy.
It ceased staging shows in 1960 and was turned into a bingo hall until its demolition 20 years later.
The Drum was founded in the 1990s to offer a hub for arts and cultural activities reflecting the diverse communities which existed within Birmingham and what it calls the "absence of black and minority ethnic voices and presence in the mainstream".
In addition to the main room, it houses two other, smaller performance areas – the 120-seat Andy Hamilton Studio named after the late jazz saxophonist and The Pit contained within the café.
The Drum was the first project ever undertaken by Larry Priest and Mark Bryant who were appointed by John Sisk & Son under a design and build contract to further develop the concept design for the building.
The contract win allowed the pair to set up a practice and were joined a year later by Richard Newman to become Bryant Priest Newman, now more commonly known as BPN Architects.