John Anson Ford Theatres

Ford Theatres

Hollywood, CA

The historic Ford Amphitheatre in Hollywood, CA completed an overall renovation and expansion in 2018.  The centerpiece is the 1,200-seat outdoor amphitheater with its dramatic arroyo backdrop. This matchless, natural backdrop is the reason for relocation in 1920 from what is now the Hollywood Bowl, across the Hollywood Freeway, to its present location, nestled in nature. 

The side walls, rear wall, towers, and house flooring were built of concrete in 1931 after a brush fire destroyed the original 1920 wood structure.  Several acoustical treatments had been attempted over the years, but excessive reverberation and anomalous reflections remained.

The new design features an expanded "sound wall" that mitigates highway noise; outside the wall is the roar of traffic, but inside the wall you can hear birds sing.  The sound wall also provides optimal lighting and control positions, and an integral, optimized acoustical treatment scheme.  The result is a unique installation of decorative perforated-metal panels that control reverberation, especially in the low frequencies.

MCH provided full acoustical and AV design services, from master planning through design and final tuning.

Architect: Levin & Associates Architects, LA, CA

Renovation Cost: $71 M