Live Hanging Onstage

indigoapropo

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Mar 19, 2014
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Chicago
Has anyone done a live hanging with an actor? We have a rig for the actor, but I'm concerned about the rope around the neck. I need something that will release if the rig fails, we've talked about velcro or a magnet.
 

RonHebbard

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Waterdown, ON, CA
Has anyone done a live hanging with an actor? We have a rig for the actor, but I'm concerned about the rope around the neck. I need something that will release if the rig fails, we've talked about velcro or a magnet.
Calling @egilson1 and @What Rigger? Possibly you'd contribute a modicum of your expertise??
Toodleoo!
Ron Hebbard
 

josh88

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Magnets. I've done this a few times, Ideally you even have a harness and a back up line that would stop the person short, but you you just split the rope, attach magnets to both ends and put it back together. If somehow the actor really did fall and it took weight, magnets slip open and it becomes and open rope. I've done this 3 or 4 times, magnets each time and its worked fine. Ideally they are just strong enough to hold it together, a person would still break a strong neodymium magnet, but I prefer whatever is just strong enough to keep the connection so that it easily breaks with no resistance.
 

egilson1

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Boston, MA
Magnets work well. I’ve also done a wire rod vertically in the middle of both halves of the rope. No matter what the rope MUST be in two half.

Ethan
 
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What Rigger?

I'm so fly....I Neverland.
Joined
Aug 24, 2006
Location
PPT.
Has anyone done a live hanging with an actor? We have a rig for the actor, but I'm concerned about the rope around the neck. I need something that will release if the rig fails, we've talked about velcro or a magnet.
Hey Indi, I'm a little concerned that you might not have a background in this sort of thing, and that you're considering a do it yourself approach. Looks like you've only recently found the Booth, and so you might not be familiar with the inherent hazards of a hanging, and would like a moment of your time to further reinforce safety, as Ethan did above. I'd love to hear more about what your Directors artistic vision is, where you want to do this, etc..


Vertigo, ZFX, Foy, Flying by Troy, etc....etc... will hook you up correctly and safely. Other than that, if doing these kinds of effects is not your profession do not do this yourself. If your next comment is "We're low budget and can't afford pros", then do not do this yourself.
People have died- recently- from (redacted) this sort of thing up.

flybyfoy.com
zfxflying.com
flyingbytroy.com
getvertigo.com
http://www.pwrigging.com/d2flying

If you want to get connected with the folks that can guarantee performer safety, and are just awesome individuals, just message me and I can get you where you need to go.

If you'd like the links to the injuries/fatalities regarding DIY hangings, message me and I can connect you to those as well.

So please, tell us more!
Thanks,
Brian
 

TheaterEd

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In case someone happens upon this thread and believes our forum members are being overly cautious when giving advice on this topic, please read up on this recent on stage death of a performer attempting a similar effect.

Thank you @indigoapropo for going the correct route and contacting someone with experience to help you safely achieve this effect. I personally have enjoyed working with the people at getvertigo.com as they are in the mid-west and within driving distance to my location.
 

gafftaper

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Yes, contact Tracy Nunnaly at Vertigo. It will cost you a little more, but it will truly be done safely. This is one of those areas where if you have to ask the question, you are not qualified to do it yourself. You could attempt it yourself and it might be safe... but if you make a mistake someone is very likely to die. Theater should never be a calculated risk with a performer's life in the balance. If you don't truly know based on years of experience and expertise in the physics, and knowing the proper gear, you should not try it.
 

What Rigger?

I'm so fly....I Neverland.
Joined
Aug 24, 2006
Location
PPT.
I want to be clear that if it's not safe we are cutting it. I'm in Chicago, if you can recommend someone local I'll reach out to them.
You want to call Tracy at Vertigo, for sure. That guy is a genius.
 
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In case someone happens upon this thread and believes our forum members are being overly cautious when giving advice on this topic, please read up on this recent on stage death of a performer attempting a similar effect.

Thank you @indigoapropo for going the correct route and contacting someone with experience to help you safely achieve this effect. I personally have enjoyed working with the people at getvertigo.com as they are in the mid-west and within driving distance to my location.
Thank you for this info and words of caution. Has anyone compiled a data base/archive on incidents like these? Specifically failures in technical equipment or operation that resulted in injury or death. I feel like that would be a powerful tool to get the artsy people (directors, designers etc.) to understand the dangers of what we do. I've had this fight twice in my career and both times I heard something to the effect of "Well how likely is it REALLY for something to go wrong." Ugh! Being able to direct people to reports of recent incidents would be nice backup when it comes time to say no.
 

What Rigger?

I'm so fly....I Neverland.
Joined
Aug 24, 2006
Location
PPT.
Thank you for this info and words of caution. Has anyone compiled a data base/archive on incidents like these? Specifically failures in technical equipment or operation that resulted in injury or death. I feel like that would be a powerful tool to get the artsy people (directors, designers etc.) to understand the dangers of what we do. I've had this fight twice in my career and both times I heard something to the effect of "Well how likely is it REALLY for something to go wrong." Ugh! Being able to direct people to reports of recent incidents would be nice backup when it comes time to say no.
I usually counter this with something along the line of: "Let's go for a drive on the freeway, and YOU don't wear your seatbelt. But I will. How likely is it REALLY for us to have a car crash?" And then ask why they're willing to risk someone else's safety, but not their own?
 

egilson1

Well-Known Member
Premium Member
Joined
Feb 25, 2009
Location
Boston, MA
Thank you for this info and words of caution. Has anyone compiled a data base/archive on incidents like these? Specifically failures in technical equipment or operation that resulted in injury or death. I feel like that would be a powerful tool to get the artsy people (directors, designers etc.) to understand the dangers of what we do. I've had this fight twice in my career and both times I heard something to the effect of "Well how likely is it REALLY for something to go wrong." Ugh! Being able to direct people to reports of recent incidents would be nice backup when it comes time to say no.
The attitude of “well it hasn’t gone wrong before” is called Normalization of Deviance. Basically when the organization becomes insensitive to deviant behavior that in no longer feels wrong to do said behavior. This thought process actually increases the chance of failure.

I use this example to emphasize the point. When you drive you run a red light every time you come to a particular intersection. You’ve never been hit. So now you feel as though it is ok to run the red light every time. In fact it’s more likely that each time you run the red light you will get t-boned.
 

What Rigger?

I'm so fly....I Neverland.
Joined
Aug 24, 2006
Location
PPT.
The attitude of “well it hasn’t gone wrong before” is called Normalization of Deviance. Basically when the organization becomes insensitive to deviant behavior that in no longer feels wrong to do said behavior. This thought process actually increases the chance of failure.

I use this example to emphasize the point. When you drive you run a red light every time you come to a particular intersection. You’ve never been hit. So now you feel as though it is ok to run the red light every time. In fact it’s more likely that each time you run the red light you will get t-boned.
This is SUCH a great way to explain it. I gotta steal it! Thanks, man!