GECC facilities in spotlight as hundreds attend open day
MORE than 800 people attended Gladstone Entertainment Convention Centre's Open Day on the Australia Day holiday on Monday.
Guided tours showed off the GECC's multiple conference rooms, $1.5 million commercial kitchen, its refurbished theatre including green room and other backstage facilities, such as a laundry for cleaning costumes.
GECC's Garry Hansen was one of eight tour guides and described the large-scale redesign and upgrade of the centre, from the high-tech conference rooms to the modern restrooms and bar in place where the old kitchen once stood.
Event-goers can now get a drink at half time, and meet friends beforehand in the foyer.
The main theatre seats 675, which is on par with the original theatre, but is complemented by a flat ground-floor space that holds up to 1000 people.
"Plus 30 years of dust has been removed," Mr Hansen said.
The new venue has already attracted big music acts, such as American country music star Kris Kristofferson, who will perform in April.
The main theatre had carpets and upholstery replaced, was re-painted and modified to improve acoustics. The memorable lime green seats of the old theatre now have plush blue coverings.
The raised standard of performance space will enable community and school groups to train in a professional environment, Mr Hansen told tour participants.
"Kids will be able to fly across stage in Peter Pan," he said.
The theatre also has a large cinema screen and will simulcast ballet, philharmonic orchestra and other performances live.
Conference rooms now have state-of-the-art technology including high definition projectors.
GECC's schedule is packed until the middle of December this year.