NEC Display Solutions Client Installation Education

Horizon Community College


A performance facility accessible by the whole community, The Horizon Theatre boasts state of the art technology to project dynamic digital backdrops to enhance stage productions whilst reducing costs.

Opened in September 2012, Horizon Community College is an Advanced Learning Centre resulting from Barnsley’s Building Schools for the Future Programme which brings together the former Holgate School and Sports College and Kingstone School.

‘Raising aspirations for all through quality, excellence and innovation’ Horizon’s inspiring mission statement sets out its purpose to serve the whole community. As a brand new facility, providing state of the art audio visual resources to support learning, leisure and cultural activities is vital to maintain excellence now and into the future.

The Challenge

With specialisms in sport and creativity, Horizon’s buildings and facilities are used by the community for leisure and cultural activities and adult learning. With state of the art theatrical spaces, the College boasts the largest theatre in the area with a capacity of 420 seats for use by the students and for hire by the wider community.


At the time of the build, no backdrop or stage curtain was installed resulting in limitations in staging professional productions. After consideration of the cost involved in designing, installing and replacing backdrops for each production, Horizon was looking for a new cost effective and future proof solution.

Horizon investigated the possibility of installing a digital backdrop which would enable it to dynamically change the content and support moving images. Both economically and ecologically, a digital solution offers the advantage of reduced costs and wastage whilst offering inspiring opportunities for creativity. After evaluating a number of options, Horizon settled for a projection stacking solution proposed by Osborne Technologies. Having had previous experience working with Osborne Technologies, an authorized NEC Reseller, the College Vice Principal was confident in its high level of service excellence.

The NEC Solution


Osborne Technologies installed three NEC PA600X projectors, stacked to project high bright dackdrop images. Tom Atkinson, General Manager at Osborne Technologies says, ‘the solution overcomes any issue of shadows appearing on the backdrop when the actors are on stage. The NEC projectors produce superb quality images enabling the school’s graphics students to produce very creative backdrops to enhance their productions.’

By stacking three PA600X projectors, each capable of projecting 6000 ANSI lumen, this solution can achieve extraordinary high brightness levels using NEC’s innovative automatic stacking setup application. With Hollywood Quality Video signal processing, even moving images are reproduced in superb quality. The projectors offer innovative ECO features, inorganic panels and up to 4000 hour long lamp life to minimise power consumption, consumables and service frequency.

Atkinson is satisfied that his team has provided Horizon with the best solution, ‘our Engineering team have done a tremendous job on the installation which looks sleek and professional.’


The Result

‘We are delighted with the result of the projector installation, as a facility available to the whole community I am exceptionally proud of what our College can offer. This summer we are staging our very first whole school stage production with a performance of Les Miserables. With the new digital backdrop our production team can go to town on creating dramatic backdrops to help bring to life the emotion of this epic story.’ Vice Principal, Horizon Community College.