The front curtain in a no-loft stage is sometimes rigged as an Austrian Curtain. The decorative quality of an Austrian curtain is achieved by sewing both horizontal and vertical fullness. This process of gathering material on the vertical seams produces a series of soft swags. Best known as an Austrian curtain. Sometimes referred to as a “Puff Drape” it is one of the most beautiful drapery styles and suits a grand theatre very well.
The image to the left shows an Austrian Curtain being raised. The amount of lift on each drawline is equal, and the drape must be lifted across all lines at an equal speed / height.
A Brail curtain is an alternative, where the client still desires a lifting effect – but wants the benefits of a flat drape. A lift drape can achieve a faster and more-desirable lifting action than the slower motion of a traveller curtain, hence the popularity for some venues and or events.
The amount of lift on each drawline is equal, and the drape must be lifted across all lines at an equal speed / height. When in it’s lowered/closed position, a braille curtain will simply hang with the look of a flat drape. Some clients will refer to this style of flat lift drape as a Roman Shade. The lift lines will be strategically and evenly placed on the back side of the drape on the seams. If stored in the “up” position this type of drape does run risk of getting fold lines, which might be problematic when the drape is lowered into the down or shown position.
Typical Fabric Choices for a brail or austrian drape include Encore Velour and Iridescent Silky Charmeuse.
Track Recommendations for this type of application will vary depending on the number of lift lines. A motorized system is necessary for this type of drape and will require installation space and electrical elements to be positioned by a licensed contractor.
See John Mayer performing live in front of an Austrian drape:
Watch an Austrian Drape as it lifts and lowers:
Contact us for more information or a track quote.
See our Guide to Stage Drapery Styles and Finishes with Austrian-Brail