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Communications, Drama and Film

Technical resources

The Drama technical team provide a range of services related to the running of all practical and logistical aspects of the Drama undergraduate and postgraduate programmes.

We're based around the Technical Office in the Alexander Building at Thornlea, and manage the infrastructure of the Drama buildings, dealing with everything from chairs to stage combat weapons, via queries about how to achieve theatrical special effects, training in the use of stage lighting and sound & AV systems and practical teaching and research support for students and staff.

Lighting resources

We have 6 fully-equipped performance studios, all are equipped with a fixed rig of lanterns to achieve a wide variety of effects, and are now all equipped with static and moving LED lights for broad colour washes and specials.

A wide range of control desks are available, including laptops running ETC's EOS system in the Alexander Building and a state-of-the-art ETC Ion desk and Zero 88 FLX desks in Roborough Studios.

Students learn how to use the lighting systems on a range of modules, but go into great detail on the Digital Theatrecrafts module.

Plans - Roborough

Plans - Alexander Building


More information

Sound resources

All rehearsal studios and teaching rooms have sound playback systems, with additional systems in all spaces used for performance work.

There are two permanent sound recording studios in the Alexander Building, which can be booked out by any Drama student after a short induction. Modules such as Digital Theatrecrafts go into more detail in how to make best use of the studios, looking at techniques for creation of montage soundscapes using found sounds and existing sound effects, and for foley.

The Macs in the studios have Logic Pro software for digital recording, editing and multi-track recording, and a networked storage drive for recording work. As the Macs are all networked, you can work in either studio, or on any of the Multimedia Studio Macs to edit your work. Macs in performance spaces are on the same network, making playback of files simple.

We have a large collection of sound effects covering everything from a thunderstorm to a breaking wine bottle. These can be accessed from the sound studios or from the technical office. If you only need a single sound effect, see the technical staff.

There are also recordings of English accents and dialects which may be useful.

The Roborough Studio control room (the main performance space) houses the playback facilities used during performances. Some equipment is shared between the two, but both spaces are well equipped.

The Technical Office in the Alexander Building houses portable digital recorders for use on location or in rehearsal, and for interview recording for research.

We use Qlab software on Macs for playback of sound and video during performance. Performance spaces are equipped with Macs, and we have additional Macbooks for work in other spaces.


The Multimedia Studio in the Alexander Building is available for Communications, Drama & Film students to work on Macs running the latest Apple applications such as Final Cut X and Logic Pro X. The six Macs in the Multimedia Studio are part of a network of Macs which includes the two sound studios and control rooms in the Alexander Building and Roborough Studios.

Students use the software to enhance presentations with well-edited media, create video material to project during performances, edit short films and audio recordings or to create a multimedia portfolio. We also have Capture software, for Lighting Visualisation. The Macs are used by students across all year groups, depending on the needs of modules. Formal training can be organised for small groups. We use Qlab software for playback of sound and multimedia content during performances and presentations.

See the Drama Technical team for more information and to discuss your needs and obtain login and access information. 


The Properties Store is located at the top of the Alexander Building, next to Seminar Room 2. Access is only available via the technical team, so please see them to make an appointment. The contents are catalogued and viewable using the department's Chronos portal.

Contents of the store

The store is organised into 4 sections:

Section 1:

  • Beach (water guns, buckets, spades)
  • Board games
  • Books
  • Exercise Balls
  • Flowers
  • Gardening (watering cans, sprayers, gnome, forks, trowel)
  • Military (ammo tin, waterbottles)
  • Soft matting 
  • Stationery (in/out trays, box files)
  • Stationery (paper, notepads, aged documents, ink pots, quills, newspapers, clipboards)
  • Toys (dolls, cuddly toys, board games)
  • Tyre

Section 2:

  • Ashtrays
  • Bathroom (brushes, loofer)
  • Bells (mains & battery operated)
  • Brass Jugs
  • Building safety
  • Bullroarers
  • Camera equipment (still / video)
  • Candleabras
  • Candles (matches, lanterns)
  • Electrical / Light 
  • Electric fire
  • Fake food
  • Golf clubs
  • Jars
  • Kitchen (towels, washing bowl, brushes)
  • Lanterns (some battery operated)
  • Laptops (old & new)
  • Metronome 
  • Mobile phones 
  • Ornaments
  • Party
  • Pets
  • Radios
  • Telephones (various)
  • Tools
  • Typewriters
  • Umbrellas
  • Vacuum cleaners
  • Wallpaper

Section 3:

  • Bedroom (duvet, pillows, cushions, sheets, rug)
  • Boxes (small)
  • Chains
  • Fabrics (misc.)
  • Fencing swords
  • Flags
  • Fruit boxes
  • Masks (Commedia, Neutral, misc) 
  • Netting (fishing, camouflage)
  • Ropes
  • Sticks
  • Suitcases (briefcases, trunks)
  • Weapons (plastic / wood)
  • Weapons (Guns, daggers) 
  • Wicker baskets 

Section 4:

  • Bird cage / table
  • Bottles (various dimensions / styles)
  • Champagne glasses (plastic)
  • Clocks
  • Crockery (various trays, plates, saucers, tea urn)
  • Crockery (cups, mugs, jugs)
  • Cutlery (misc.)
  • Furniture (misc.)
  • Glass (various dimensions / styles)
  • Glass jars
  • Mannequins
  • Mirrors (various dimensions / styles)
  • Mixing bowls
  • Picture Frames (various dimensions / styles) 
  • Plastic tubs
  • Saucepans
  • Steering wheel 


Michelle manages the wardrobe store which provides a huge range of costumes and accessories to Drama course-related projects. 

More information coming soon.


The workshop in the Alexander Building is a light, airy space for the construction of props, small items of scenery, and puppet and mask-making.

It's equipped with plenty of bench space, a selection of paints and glues and is located on the ground floor of the building next to the car park for easy loading.

Students on the Puppetry, Research & Performance and Practical Essay modules make extensive use of the space.

Additionally there is a large storage bay which is used by students throughout the Department for storage of props and small items of furniture required by modules.

Facility bookings

All of the Communications, Drama & Film Department spaces can be booked by students for additional practice and study when they're not already booked for teaching.

A weekly booking system exists to allow students to book spaces whenever necessary. As the buildings are open until 9pm, this allows a considerable amount of self-directed work to take place out of normal hours.

Rehearsal Bookings‌

During vacation periods, the rehearsal studios in the Alexander Building at Thornlea and in Roborough Studios can be booked for external rehearsals and workshops.

Email with your needs and proposed dates for information about rates and availability.

All spaces are equipped with sound systems, wifi and data projectors. Two studios have sprung floors.

Water Coolers with chilled and filtered water are available in both main buildings - please bring a water bottle as we do not use plastic cups. 

More details on rehearsal spaces can be found below:

Conference Bookings

Outside University term-time, and some weekends and evenings, the Drama Department studios and seminar rooms can be booked for external and internal one-off events.

The various spaces at Thornlea provide a high-quality conference environment for small events up to 50 delegates.

Larger groups can be accommodated at the Roborough Studios.


All spaces used for conferences will (by default) have the following equipment:

  • Data projector (5000 lumens)
  • Laptop PC (Windows). We are running Microsoft Office 365 on the Windows PCs. 
    You can also wirelessly stream to the projection system from your own device (laptop, tablet, phone) using our AirServer system. Our technical team will demonstrate this at the start of your event.  
    Please bring your Powerpoint presentation on a USB memory stick - we'll load it onto the appropriate PC/Mac in advance of your presentation.
    We can also supply remote clickers for wireless powerpoint control (with laser pointer built-in).
  • Sound system (connection via laptop headphone port or Bluetooth)
  • DVD/Bluray player (Multi-region) connected to projector and sound system
  • Wi-fi or cabled internet access
  • Guest login accounts are available for delegates to use to access the University Wi-fi service.

More complex audio-visual setups, including fully-designed stage lighting, can be arranged at extra cost.

Please note: There is no parking available for conference delegates at Thornlea. There are two accessible parking spaces which may be used by holders of disabled car badges.

If you have additional specific requirements or any questions about practicalities or facilities, please email Jon Primrose, Technical Manager at

Technical training

The dedicated Drama technical team are based in the Alexander Building and are able to help with any query related to Drama performance. We have a wide range of professional and technical experience, and manage all of the technical resources in the Drama buildings.


We also run a series of workshop activities through the academic year aimed at demystifying and improving technical skills, from using lighting systems, sound recording and editing, video editing, animation through to building scenery and prop-making. The workshops are advertised on the What's On events page.

More information

Email us at for more information or just pop into the technical office.

Technical team

Faculty Business Partner

Jon Primrose

Technical Services Manager

Chris Mearing

Drama Technician

Lewis Mcguire

Wardrobe Technician

Michelle Yeates

Facility bookings