Bill Conner Associates LLC

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Bill Conner Associates LLC

Chicago: Bill Conner FASTC  637 North Marion Street  Oak Park IL 60302    (708) 437-0505

​​​How Tall Should My Stage Be?


Winter 2014

Considerations in the planning of school or community theatres.  The overall height of a stage is an important decision that permanently impacts the usefulness of a space

Stage Ventilation: Clearing the Heat and SmokeProtocol
Summer 2013

Most every stage requires some sort of vent system to eliminate smoke in the event of a fire.  These systems and the requirements are sometimes misunderstood.
Codes and Standards: Optional or Mandatory?
Winter 2013

There is often confusion about the difference between codes and standards and how they are applied.  Codes aren't always the law in your jurisdiction.

The Top Ten Mistakes in Planning and Designing High School Theatres
Lighting & Sound America
March 2010

Important mistakes to avoid when planning the typical high school theatre.  We picked ten "greatest hits" but there are surely many more that can easily be avoided with good planning.
Hose CabinetsFire Hose Cabinets are required on stages in most jurisdictions that use the Life Safety Code. Some thoughts.
Orchestra Pit Safety
Orchestra Pits are important for many multipurpose theatres, but they are also challenge to design and build properly.  Our views.
Proscenium Opening Protection
Proscenium Opening Protection, often in the form of a Fire Safety Curtain, are often misunderstood.  A discussion of the codes that apply.
Stage Curtains
There are requirements in regards to codes for the use of curtains or drapes on a stage.  A short discussion
BCMC Report on Stages, Platforms and Sound Stages 1992
​In the late 1980s and early 90s there was substantial revision to the model building codes.  This report on stages, platforms and sound stages became the basis for much of the current code language in use today.


Here are a few articles and white papers on a variety of topics related to theatres and other assembly spaces.  We hope to add to these over time. We welcome your feedback and responses.

​​​​​​Lighting Pipes

What may be a mundane subject is really quite important to the function of a theatre for the mounting and use of theatrical lighting

LED LightingSolid State or "LED" lighting is a hot topic in our industry.  Is it ready to replace the quartz lighting we know and love?  Or is there a middle path?

Organizations and Links

Interesting discussions at

Bill Conner Associates Llc Theatre Consulting