Fire in Grill (for "Misery" play by Stephen King)

OK... It's a 52-seat small theatre. Minimal budget. We are producing the play "Misery" based on the Stephen King novel.

With the audience a mere 12-feet (3.6m) away... the actress must wheel a Weber Grille onto the stage and set a book galley on fire... then closes the lid... wheels it offstage after a few minutes of dialog.
  • No cables/wires (wireless)
  • No liquids (will spill as she maneuvers the grill thru the doorway to the bedside)
  • May have to be 100% Actor Triggered. (scary, eh?) if it can't be wireless via DMX
  • The 2 actors onstage are both Equity.
It has to be convincing>>>not to be a topic of discussion; "Oh, bless them... they tried."

It may be a small low-cost venue... but it is "professional" regional theatre. This is in Ft. Lauderdale, FL >>> the demographic of this little theatre are mostly NYC transplants/retirees. They are a picky crowd! (despite only paying $35 for a seat!)

Anybody have any ideas on where I should direct my searches?

Thanx y'all!


Renting to Corporate One Fixture at a Time.
Without a budget it’s hard to suggest much. I would look to the rental market for a tiny fogger paired with an RC4 and a wireless DMX battery fixture. I know you said you want them to trigger it and don’t want to do wireless but they are pretty cheap to rent and actor trigger isn’t ideal.

DIY a disposable camera circuit, free if you schmooze some photo places, some CFL colored lamps wire the flash button to a switch and a can of smoke that sprays when the lid closes while throwing the book in said grill.

Good luck 😝


Well-Known Member
The haloween fire pots have done yeoman's duty for me for a decade or more. Light on silk fabric blown by muffin fan. Can run them on a computer UPS battery pack. (have to go into it and crush the little beeper)
Simple power switch hidden anywhere convenient for the actor. Sub divide the weber.. throw the book in the front half, fire pot lives in the back half.

I have used these for castle wall torches, Trash can fire for Hooverville and others, Campfire. Very convincing flame at close range. If you're lucky enough to find one of the older units with halogen rather than LED
lighting, they are even more convincing.

If you really wanted to get fancy, you could have embers in the grill prior to the flare. A little minimally expanding spray foam to make a platter of dollops for coals. backlit with an orange or 1/2 orange 1/2 red halogen reflector bulb from the base of the weber.
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Starr T.

Just a "singin' to the choir" question here... if your demographic is "mostly NYC transplants/retirees. They are a picky crowd!"

How do they expect the arts to survive & not become even more of a class/ economic divide? Without real philanthropic support?
How many shows are finding it difficult to fill calls for stagehands, when fast food pays as good or better these days?
Just curious...

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