Light Console (1935 - 1955)
The Strand Light Console is designed to give an operator, seated in full view of the stage, absolute control of all the lighting circuits that make up a modern stage installation, whatever the size of the theatre.
This revolutionary lighting control, and the ubiquitous Pattern 23 spotlight became synonymous with Fred Bentham and Strand. The Light Consoles lasting legacy was to progress the technology of lighting control from a complex on-stage mechanical device to a remote control which could be located where the operator could actually see what was being lit.
A specially-made church organ console remotely controlled banks of resistance dimmers which were connected to constant-speed, motor driven shafts via magnetic clutches
1935: Original / Prototype: King Street Strand Electric Theatre (demo theatre). Moved to London Palladium in 1941 following bombing of King Street (removed in 1949).
1940: National Opera House, Lisbon (108 ways)
1946: Theatre Royal, Bristol (60 ways)
1946: South Short Icedrome, Blackpool (64 ways)
1949: London Palladium (152 ways, replacing the 1935 original)
1949: National Opera House, Ankara (136 ways)
1949: Palace Theatre, Manchester (108 ways)
1950: Empress Theatre, Earls Court, London (90 ways)
1950: Theatre Royal Drury Lane, London (216 ways) [now in the Jim Laws Collection]
1950: Stoll Theatre, Kingsway, London (176 ways)
1951: Royal Festival Hall, London (84 ways) [now on display at DHA Designs]
1952: London Coliseum (216 ways)
1954: Her Majesty's Theatre, London (152 ways)
1954: Adelphi Theatre, London (152 ways)
1954: Caracas University, Venezuala (94 ways)
1955: Plaza, Caracas, Venezuala (121 ways)
1955: Theatre Polski, Warsaw [This was the last Light Console manufactured]
The document 'Technology of the Light Console' by Brian Legge (see below) goes into great detail about how to operate a Light Console.