As a top music school with over 250 Grammy-winning graduates, the Berklee College of Music is known for its inventive methods of connecting its students to the outside community. Their latest project, Back Bay Beats—also known as B3—is a collaboration between the school and one of Boston’s favorite restauranteurs. Here, Berklee has managed to create a unique experience for patrons, chefs, and their students—with delicious cuisine, a fresh atmosphere, and student-led musical entertainment, B3 is the ideal set-up to help musicians learn outside of the formal recital hall. Acentech provided acoustics and AV consulting services directly for the school and the architects at Analogue Studios.
Back Bay Beats offers three distinctive experiences: The Main House, The Alley, and Back Stage—each of which require different acoustical conditions. The Main House, which features a large bar and flexible table seating, serves the typical patron looking to grab a bite in a more conventional manner. Further into the 4,000 SF space one finds The Alley, which has a birdcage-style stage for performers sitting on the same level as the audience. Here, Berklee students play music and hone in on their skills by practicing for real, dynamic audiences. The Back Stage gives visitors the option of reserving a private dining experience, which is perfect for large dinners and networking events. Acentech’s team of acousticians worked closely with the design and construction teams and provided recommendations for calibrating room acoustics, sound isolation, and mechanical system noise control, allowing patrons of all three spaces to enjoy their time at B3 with minimal disturbances in other areas of the restaurant. To provide optimal performing conditions for students, Acentech also provided guidance on reverberation control.
An optimal performance setting for artists and patrons also depends on the audiovisual systems available. Acentech’s team of AV consultants worked to design sound system capabilities for B3. Flexible and user friendly, these professional grade systems can easily fit the needs of singers, instrumental groups, or solo acoustic acts. No longer tied to recital rooms and music halls, virtually any type of student at Berklee now has a way to gain valuable performing experience in front of real, dynamic audiences.