DeLaMar Theatre is located in the heart of Amsterdam just a stone’s throw away from the lively Leidseplein Square with its many venues for contemporary music, traditional theater and cinemas. The driving force behind this new theater in Amsterdam is the VandenEnde Foundation, which was founded in 2001 by Joop van den Ende and his wife Janine, and whose main objective is the promotion of culture and cultural entrepreneurship. Joop van den Ende is the founding father of one of world’s largest media production companies Endemol Productions, which created the format for Big Brother and brings daily entertainment to millions of people around the world with broadcasts such as Strictly Come Dancing and Extreme Makeover Home Edition.
After an intensive building project which took five years, DeLaMar Theater opened its doors on November 28th, 2010. It is a contemporary theater promoting first-class entertainment for a wide audience in areas such as modern and classical drama, comedy, musical, family theater, festivals to various high-profile international productions. It has two large theaters seating 1,500 persons and has several spacious lounges as well as a Grand Café.
The lounge areas also house a very special art collection, including works purchased by Janine van den Ende and specially commissioned over-sized photographs by Dutch art photographers with the theme ‘theater’.
Behind the scenes of the DeLaMar Theatre lies a complicated organizational system that requires an extraordinary effort with regards to security. On a 24 hour basis, the building is busy with a continuous stream of visitors and employees. The facilities, visitors, employees, and assets of the theatre including the valuable art collection, inventories and administrational documents must be protected against theft and vandalism at all times.
When there is an evening performance DeLaMar Theater can count on thousands of attendees, audience, staff, visiting technicians and actors coming in and out, and moving through the various rooms. “Here we can make a clear distinction,” explains Patrick Uni, Building Manager, DeLaMar Theatre. “We talk about ‘Front of House’ and ‘Back of House’ and the security of each of these has its specific requirements.’’
“Front of House” refers to the area located on the main street which includes the main entrance. This is also where the box office is positioned as well as the entrance for the many weekly events the theater hosts such as product launches, conferences, seminars and galas. The safety of all visitors, employees, art and facilities must be constantly managed , and preferably discretely to allow visitors to feel welcome and able to move freely throughout the theater spaces.
For security reasons it is important that certain functional areas of the theatre can be closed off from the public whilst still taking into account the staff requirement to freely move between the public spaces and administrative areas. The staff-only areas are referred to as “Back of House”. This section includes the organizational part of the theater such as the stage door, the locker rooms, staff cafeteria, offices, stage, instrument storage and technical storage areas. Also here lies a security challenge with regards to a continuous flow of people. There are often several performances rehearsed during the day and each production has its own actors, director, musicians and technical staff for lighting and sound, all of whom share facilities such as changing rooms. This requires safe storage of personal belongings. In addition to this each performance will have its own theatrical scenery with the necessary technical tools, furniture, costumes and other necessary valuables. It is absolutely vital that these can remain untouched between rehearsals and show nights, locked up in a secure area only accessible by authorized production team members controlled according to predefined time logs.
The changing programming, teams, function groups and the associated variety of levels of authorization in connection to time logs and areas has created the need for an advanced security system.
Guided by previous positive experiences with security installations at other Endemol Productions locations, DeLaMar Theater selected Honeywell security solutions, and the installer Shield Beveiligingstechniek due to its extensive experience in advanced security integration design.
“We were looking for a reliable security partner with specific and specialized knowledge,” added Uni. “For us, choosing Shield Beveiligingstechniek became obvious. More importantly, as it would be the beginning of a long professional relationship with the security integrator chosen and it would require close cooperation in order to drive forward innovative, tailor-made solutions. We believed it was important to choose an integrator who, figuratively speaking, spoke the same language.”
From the beginning of the project it became clear to both DeLaMar Theatre and Shield Beveiligingstechniek that the ideal solution was Honeywell WIN-PAK® access control integrated with video surveillance and intrusion detection systems. The renowned WIN-PAK software is especially developed for the integration of advanced security applications and is very user-friendly in terms of functionality, flexibility, scalability and management.
WIN-PAK allows users to manage their access control and integrated security systems using floor plans. DeLaMar Theatre chose the proven and reliable Galaxy Dimension intruder panel with a variety of IP and analogue cameras from the ACUIX and Performance Series connected to a Fusion IV 32-channel digital video recorder with VideoBloX.
The Galaxy Dimension intruder panel on its own has the capability of integrating intruder security with access control in up to 32 sections,
securing up to 520 zones and 64 doors. In addition,at strategic locations throughout the building, 60 DT-7550 Dual PIR detectors with anti-mask and were installed, some of which are linked to a camera for video verification.
For the purpose of access control the DeLaMar Theatre opted for a system based on access cards, installing 135 OmniClass card readers. featuring many advanced functionalities such as intuitive programming of 67 weekly schedules. This functionality is of particular relevance to the theater as the system supports 1000 card holders and keeps an access and intruder log of up to 1500 events.
The surveillance system consists of a combination of analogue and IP cameras with high resolution and True Day/Night functionality connected to a Fusion IV Hybrid DVR, maximizing the advantages of both technologies. Through connection to the audio/video matrix VideoBloX with real-time diagnostics it is even more user-friendly.
Through the WIN-PAK integration software platform, the DeLaMar Theatre does not only connect the individual systems but also manages the complete system through the intuitively programmed floor plans.
Facilitating easy management for the security staff was a crucial point. The system had to be flexible to use with respect to the variable programming of the theater, but also easy to use to avoid the need to inform the security staff every time there was an update in the programming. Of further importance was that only a few people, such as the key holder of the theatre, had complete insight into the security system and authorisation to adjust it.
The WIN-PAK software makes it easy to program an unlimited number of job levels, predefining the level of functionality or access restriction. In the same way also the ‘command files’ can be divided according to different levels of authorization.
This means that even temporary receptionists can support certain needs, such as temporary opening of doors through the floor plans, without jeopardizing the watertight security of the whole theater. Also, these employees can create temporary visitor cards for certain parts of the theater such as offices – only or canteen storage.
By using floor plans it is easy for employees with a low authorization level to get an overview of the secured facilities. It presents a visual display showing which doors are open and provides an alert whenever a security risk arises such as a door left ajar or opened by force. In this way the receptionist does not need a thorough knowledge of the overall security system and the currently applicable opening schedule, because the system automatically reports any incident via a pop-up on the floor plan, clarifying where the event occurs and what type of event it is. At certain access points such as emergency doors where camera surveillance is extra important, the reception staff is also provided with cameras that he/she can directly control. This enables the possibility of real time video verification.
The security solution that DeLaMar Theater and Shield Beveiligingstechniek have created meets all the specified functionalities, and indeed incorporates an extended wish list that evolved with the solution as it was rolled out.
Major benefits can be highlighted. Since the opening, the number of incidents of theft has drastically reduced and human errors leading to security breaches can be identified and rectified automatically. “The challenge in the project was not only to design a workable system in all sense of the word, but also the exclusion of issues that may arise from the human factor,” explains Stephan Azijnman, project manager and co-owner of Shield Beveiligingstechniek. “This is also the direct reason why we deliberately chose to integrate intrusion with the video surveillance system. These are usually implemented separately from each other.”
The advantages of this integration were already clear before the opening. During an incident at one of the doors between Front and Back of House a receptionist identified and verified a security event by using the controllable camera to scout the area. After this action, the camera was unintentionally left in a zoomed in position which meant that the entrance was no longer optimally secured. Thanks to the integration platform it was a small task to add a time code and a default camera setting to the system, forcing the camera to automatically return to the starting position after a certain time period has elapsed. “Since the incident an automatic time code has been added to manually open doors as well,” comments Uni.
The DeLaMar Theater believes that the power of the system lies in its flexibility. The system is ideal for programming new features and even allows that custom scripts or third-party products can easily be integrated, a big step towards trouble-free future expansion and updates. The result is that visitors, staff, production teams and thousands of euros in technology, tools, supplies and personal belongings will always be safe and protected in the DeLaMar Theater.
Partner of Choice
Shield Beveiligingstechniek specializes in electronic security systems. Using innovative products and systems they are forward looking in the integration of access control, camera systems and intrusion detection systems. Shield Beveiligingstechniek is also a participant in the Honeywell Systems Integrator Program where they have acquired the Elite status. This status shows that Shield Beveiligings techniek has thorough knowledge of the Honeywell integrated product series, and have proven to be capable to design and install, and maintain complex security solutions of varying sizes with lasting success.
• 1x WINPAK Professional Edition Access Control Software incl. Galaxy integration
• 135x OmniClass OM30 Mullion Mount Smart Card Reader
• 14x WG2200/SG Emergency buttons
• 1x Honeywell Modulaire Matrix Switch
• 1x Fusion IV DVR 32 TCP/IP NVR 32 channel
• 4x Honeywell 19” TFT-LCD monitor
• 9x Honeywell HCD545X true D/N WDR colour camera
• 16x Honeywell HD51X vandal resistent Mini Dome HR colour camera
• 5x Honeywell Acuix ES PTZ indoor camera
• 1x Galaxy Dimension GD 520 2.5A intruder panel
• 1x Galaxy MK7 LCD control panel
• 1x Galaxy Ethernet module
• 61x Honeywell DT-7550 Pir-Radar ANTI MASK dual sensor