I did the lighting design for Inherit the Wind just this past April. The play
basically has two settings; the courtroom and the town square. When I lit this show, the play
began with pools of light on each townsperson as they began speaking, eventually filling the whole stage
as the town came to life. When the scene switches to the jail, i used a deep blue light on Bert (the defendant) as the baliff approached, and then a dim no color
light when Rachel began to speak to Bert.
When Brady (lawyer for the prosecution) arrived, I used the town's wash
and then brightened the raised area from which he and the mayor spoke.
When Drummond (lawyer for the defense) arrived to check out the courtroom, I slowly went to a red wash
, seeing as the town pictures him as 'the devil'.
For the courtroom, when it was in session i used a general pink wash
with a dark red fill because of the heat and the tension. When the court was not in session, i used some no color
lighting and dimmed the general wash
, almost putting the stage
in the appearance of worklights. When someone had a key line
/speech in the courtroom, he/she got a special brightened in their area.
There is also a night session in the town square, so i used light blue lights with breakup gobos. As the Reverend got more intense in his speech and Drummond showed up on the otherside of the stage
, i filled in with some deep red.
At the end of the show when Drummond is silently packing and thinking, the courtroom dimmed to 2 pools of light, one on the witness stand and one where he was at the defense table. When he left, it sat for a second and then faded to black.
Hope this helps you, and i'll go look for my script and lighting design to see if i left anything out.