Joburg Theatre wanted to get more exposure for their shows by taking them to the people – especially those folk from disadvantaged backgrounds – thus allowing them easier access to theatre productions.

The aim was for audiences in remote areas and at major festive gatherings to be able to experience the productions as if they were actually sitting in a theatre. This required duplicating the dynamics of a theatre on the road and ensuring the safe and quick set up of a mobile stage.

In a move to make this project a reality, Serco developed a full 3D model to allow the client to visualise the show trailer and features.

Approval of the concept was given by the client and the result is a 15.5m trailer designed with a hydraulically actuated 10m section of the sidewall, which folds out to create a 50m₂ stage. The roof can be raised hydraulically by an additional 1,4m to a total height of 5,8m to create an amphitheatre effect and to cater for the extensive lighting suspended from aluminium girders.

The super structure is built to accommodate a 38KVA generator housed in a separate compartment with pneumatic actuators which slide the generator out for ease of service.

The trailer also incorporates a fully equipped backstage change room, while curtaining extends throughout the sides and rear of the stage area hiding the mechanical sections of the trailer to give the appearance of a permanent structure. The electrical system can provide power for ample lighting and sound equipment resulting in a complete theatre experience.

When the show is over, the equipment can be packed away and stowed on the vehicle. The stage and roof is folded away hydraulically so that the mobile theatre has the appearance of a standard box trailer.

The trailer itself is distinctive in that it has a striking full digital vinyl wrap.

Serco is proud of the role it has played in assisting the Joburg Theatre take the joys of stage productions to a wider audience, conveniently and professionally.