Since opening its doors in 1981, Geelong Performing Arts Centre (GPAC) has become the creative hub not only for the city of Geelong, but also for regional Victoria. Part of a group of state-owned cultural agencies including Victorian Arts Centre, Museum Victoria, National Gallery of Victoria, State Library of Victoria, Australian Centre for Moving Image and Film Victoria; GPAC was designed to benefit artists and audiences alike. By providing high quality facilities that encourage participation in the performing arts, GPAC is committed to ensuring an exciting and bright future for the arts in Victoria, in order to enrich the cultural fabric of the community.
Spanning across two locations, GPAC is comprised of 2 theatres, a gallery, foyer, Costa Hall, Alcoa Studio, a VIP lounge, rehearsal room and 12 dressing rooms. With capacity for up to 1500 guests, GPAC’s facilities are highly sought after not only for performances, but also for conference and functions – on average, they host approximately 40 events per month. The combination of quirky spaces like the proscenium arch style theatre and a church that has been converted into a hall, matched with state-of-the-art audio-visual facilities, make the venue ultimately versatile and an event planners dream.
GPAC had been using Priava’s legacy system, Events Perfect, for more than 15 years when the announcement was made that it coming to end of life. While they were initially worried about moving away from their existing performing arts center software which was working effectively, the management team saw this as an opportunity to review alternative providers in order to see what options were available on the market.
Given that they were already using cloud-based applications across other areas of their business, the management team were also excited by the prospect of adopting more cloud-based systems in order to move another aspect of their business online. Customer Services Manager at GPAC, Tina Rettke explains “Perhaps this decision would have been slightly more scary if we hadn’t used cloud-based applications before and this was our first attempt, however, given that we were already using cloud-based systems for our ticketing and rosters, we knew what to expect.” Tina expounds that the primary factor in their decision making process was the speed of the system, “This was mainly because we had previously implemented another cloud-based system to manage another area of our business and it just wasn’t very quick, so we needed to make sure that any new system that we chose would be fast enough for what we needed.”
In the end it was decided that Priava was the most sensible choice as they had an existing relationship with the Priava team, which would translate into a smooth implementation process. Tina Rettke comments “While we had a brief look into other providers on the market, at the time we made the decision to move to Priava because we already had an existing relationship with their support team and they understand how we work.” Since implementing Priava in January 2016, Tina affirms that the system has delivered the speed that they needed from a cloud-based application, “Since we started using the system, we have been happy with the reliability and speed delivered by Priava. As long as the Internet connection is stable, then you can access the most up-to-date version of the system.”
"With Priava, all updates are done outside of business hours, so our users just come into work the next day and get started using the latest version of the Priava – there’s nothing else that needs to be done."
Customer Services Manager
Geelong Performing Arts Centre
The benefits that GPAC has achieved through the use of Priava’s cloud-based performing arts center software solution so far include:
Having made the decision to move to multiple cloud-based applications to manage various aspect of their business, GPAC chose to keep their local server in the short term to enable them to access read only versions of their former on-premise solutions as a reference point. That said, the management team believe that there will come to a point that this data is no longer required at which point they will be able to retire their servers and operate completely on the cloud. Tina explains, “Currently, we still need to go back and refer to the data within our former event and venue management system, so we have a read only database stored on our existing server. This is the same for each of the different cloud-based applications that we have adopted across our business. This means that at present we still have to maintain and back up our existing servers. That said, we expect that in future as the historic data from our older, on-premise systems becomes out-dates and irrelevant we will no longer need to maintain those servers and this will have a significant impact not only on our dependence on IT resources, but will also have considerable financial impact.”