Italian theatre armchairs: buying guide

italian theatre armchairs

Made in Italy theatre seats have the task of seating a passive subject, who does not perform any muscular work, but who is engaged in watching and listening to a performance; for this reason, they must be provided with certain requirements that guarantee the ability to accommodate the person, ensuring the possibility of maintaining a correct postural posture. In fact, when the musculature is inactive, it could easily assume non-anatomical positions with negative consequences on the osteo-articular apparatus especially at the level of the spinal column. Therefore, there are safety and control provisions regulated by the Ministry of the Interior that must certify their approval.


Taking into account the anthropometric characteristics of potential spectators, the main feature of theatre seats is their ergonomics, which is a fundamental discriminating factor in their choice. Seats must have rigid seats and backrests, the constituent materials of which can be either beech or plywood, but also thermoplastic resins or metal. In most cases, these structures are covered with polyurethane foam padding with adequate anatomical shaping, in order to ensure correct distribution of body weight in correspondence of the glutes and pelvis, which are the areas of maximum weight loading. The purpose is to avoid excessive pressure and abnormal muscular tensions that could be the cause of pain; if the user is uncomfortable in a theatre chair, it means that it does not guarantee the indispensable requirements for its use. A further aspect to consider carefully is the possibility that the spectator tends to slide forward on the seat, thus altering his or her anatomical posture to assume incorrect positions. A spectator attending a performance must keep his or her torso close to the backrest, which has the task of following the shape of the spinal column and supporting it comfortably; the spectator must also be able to position his or her head backwards as the field of vision is oriented towards the stage. Therefore, the backrest of the Italian armchair must possess the correct inclination, given that the angle between the seat and backrest is fixed and that the structure connecting them is rigid; it is only possible to operate on the inclination to adjust the trim of the armchair. The seat of theatre armchairs may be fixed, but more often it is foldable and the folding movement occurs by force of gravity; when purchasing a product of this type, it is always advisable to ensure that the seat anchorage systems are up to standard and guarantee absolute safety of use. The structure is mounted at the bottom on fixed supports, generally sheet metal feet anchored to the floor, often painted with scratch-resistant epoxy powders.


The dimensions of Italian theatre armchairs refer to standard values of 69x92x67 centimeters, the height of the seat is 48 centimeters and its depth is 52 centimeters; depending on the models, there may be slight variations, always in compliance with current regulations. The under-seat, made of beech, resin or multilayer, must be 8 millimeters thick with 9 millimeters holes for sound absorption, in order to guarantee optimal acoustics; the sides have a variable thickness, but in any case, adequate for supporting the arms, which is generally shared by two adjacent spectators. The backrest can have dimensions of 53x47 centimeters, but these values depend on the type of model, square or rounded. The height of the armrests also has a standard value of 67 centimeters; as for the width, this depends on the possibility of using a single armrest for two seats or two armrests side by side. The dimensions of the side panels depend on the model; in fact, the side panel can be either long to the floor or short with a foot.


The load-bearing structure of Italian theatre armchairs, as mentioned above, is made of beech wood, plywood, resin or metal; on these bases the padding is placed, which performs the task of making the seat and support more comfortable, guaranteeing an ergonomic wrap around the user's body. The most commonly used material for padding is hot-foamed polyurethane foam, known for being fireproof, hypoallergenic and safe. The upholstery, on the other hand, is made of various types of fabrics, such as coarse weave canvas or velvet: in the first case, the cover can be easily removed as there are often zips that allow removal; in the second case, the upholstery is fixed. Seat and row numbering can be created with the use of classic, commercially available, pre-packaged plastic labels, or with embroidery on the upper part of the backrest if the structure allows; the latter solution is typical of very elegant environments.


The prices of Italian theatre armchairs are extremely variable depending on the model, the materials used, but above all the number of pieces purchased; in fact, for commissions of many items, companies usually propose convenient offers with prices discounted up to 50%; packaging and shipping costs are almost always included.

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