The Marlowe Theatre

Rebrand

Following an extensive credentials pitch, we were commissioned to create the branding for this new-build theatre in the heart of Canterbury.

The challenges of the brief included the sensitivities of being a Council run project, with an independent delivery team, in a world heritage site, at a time of local authority cuts and political upheaval.

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We employed a pyramid-style approach, meeting first with the key decision makers and then running workshops with each of the different stakeholder groups to cut through any cynicism abut the project.

Together, we were able to create a branding solution that is visually innovative (and reflects the bold move of commissioning Keith Williams Architects to build in the middle of the historic city centre).

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We collaborated with a wide group of stakeholders throughout, involving them in decision making and involving them in the creative process of filtering ideas until we had the perfect solution.

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The starting point for the design was the shape of the building’s most distinctive architectural feature, its fly-tower. Taking that basic shape and giving it a translucent quality allowed us to build up colours like the coloured gels of theatre spotlights.

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The logo is dead (or so the design press would have us believe). We did create a logo for very occasional use but our solution is a full visual identity. Using simple guidelines, every application can be uniquely tailored to be appropriate to its audience whilst retaining the value of The Marlowe.

Ocky Murray

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Many people have commented on the new brand. It’s clearly very effective and I have to say I’m delighted both with it, and the highly positive reaction that people have given to it.  Thank you very much for the very hard work and care you’ve put into it.

Mark Everett, Theatre Director

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Events Brochure

We designed the events brochure for the venue’s relaunch and continue to produce each issue. The key to its success is that we’ve made it a destination venue where audiences want to return and try new things. From the covers (that don’t feature star performers) to the billing of events, the emphasis is always on a consistent message – The Marlowe delivers magical evenings out and memories that you will treasure.

Our collaboration with Cog on the theatre’s brochure has been highly successful. The beginning of the process saw Cog draw together the many different and (sometimes) competing messages about our theatre and the shows that it presents, giving everything a unified voice and look. The brochure designs have been excellent, managing to prioritise and reinforce the theatre’s brand, across the many different types of shows that we present.

John Baker, Head of Marketing & Communications, The Marlowe

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Membership magazine

The Marlowe now has the second biggest Friends scheme in the country (after we helped to coax them back following the venue’s enforced closure).

Targeted specifically at this traditional theatre-going audience, we put the emphasis on celebrity faces and backstage ‘gossip’, making this an insider’s club.

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The Marlowe Studio brochure

This stand-alone piece of communication takes the focus off the venue and pushes messages about ‘genres’ to a younger, non-traditional audience.