Charlie Brown Automation

I'm doing a set for You're a Good Man Charlie Brown, and I'm looking to automate two small pieces. I've got everything figured out, but I was wondering if anyone knew anything about reversible direction motors, and what might work for these small pieces...
What are you trying to get the pieces to do, what kind of controllers/plc's do you have, are they tracked, and how much money do you want to sink into this?
To reverse direction there are two routes either a DC motor and then when you want to change directions switch + and - or an AC motor with a drive unit. We were able to get two 1 horse motors off ofebay for around $60 shipped.
There is a track in the deck, which is eight inches off the floor. The units just the Psychiatric Help stand and a seat. I know what to do to reverse the direction of a DC motor, but I was hoping someone knew what KIND of motor it would take and where I could get one. Under the stage, there would be a cable line with pulleys with the motor attached to one end.
You could try the sort of motor used on electric wheelchairs. I think they run at 24 Volts. If the platform is moved without anyone on it there should be more than enough power. If you wanted 36 Volts you could use aircraft motors. You will probably find suitable motors at surplus stores.

One question is, Will all this effort be worth it. You have to wire safety stops etc. If this is only for a short run I would just use a manual winch system.

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