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ITEAC 2018: Further Keynote Speakers Revealed

Date Posted: 21st Mar 2018

Following on from the announcement of the first Keynote Speaker, Dutch architect Francine Houben, Creative Director of mecanoo architecten, the ITEAC 2018 Editorial Board has revealed two further Keynote Speakers, to join her in the line-up of this year’s International Theatre Engineering and Architecture Conference 2018, 3-5 June, London.

With ever more news of major developments in the Middle East, Paul Griffiths, CEO of Dubai Airports, with responsibility for the operation and development of Dubai International (DXB) as well as Dubai World Central (DWC), will provide a unique insight to the challenges that urbanisation brings to large infrastructure projects, and how important cultural development is as part of the process.

His high-profile career in transportation has been combined with a life-long passion for music. At an early age he learned to play the organ and although he aspired to train as a Cathedral Organist, having studied both music and computer science, he has followed a career in the management of global transport hubs. Nevertheless, he has pursued his musical enthusiasm making many public appearances as a recitalist, continuo player and soloist in concerti accompanied by major orchestras. Paul is currently a Vice President of the Royal College of Organists.

Senior Partner at Swiss architecture firm Herzog & de Meuron, Ascan Mergenthaler, will enliven the stimulation and provocation session, which will spearhead the final day of the Conference.

A stalwart of this leading firm for more than twenty years, he is in charge of various projects in Europe, Asia and the Americas. He led the extraordinary team that realised the Elbphilharmonie in Hamburg – a building complex that accommodates not only a philharmonic hall but also a chamber music hall, as well as restaurants, bars, a panorama terrace with views of Hamburg and the harbour, apartments, a hotel and parking facilities.

His Keynote address will be followed by his participation in the Concert Hall Design & Acoustics session, where the current trends relating to acoustics and audio-technologies will be explored, referencing recent projects in China, Hamburg, Paris and Berlin.


The three-day event will be opened by Louise Jeffreys, Artistic Director of one of the world’s largest arts centre, the Barbican, London, and  those looking to secure a ticket to attend the fifth edition of this essential quadrennial gathering, are advised to book quickly.


Full programme information, as announced, will be listed on the Conference’s website.


Immediately following ITEAC 2018 will be the Association of British Theatre Technicians (ABTT) 40th anniversary annual Theatre Show – Wednesday 6th & Thursday 7th – where product and service suppliers meet with specifiers, designers and production practitioners over two days of exhibition and seminars, at Alexandra Palace, the Grade II listed venue and home of the world’s first regular television broadcasts, located just north of the City of London. Registration for this event is now open.

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