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Sweeney Todd

Discussion in 'Lighting and Electrics' started by lighttechie5948, Oct 26, 2008.

  1. lighttechie5948

    lighttechie5948 Active Member

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    I'm designing Sweeney Todd next March!

    Any Ideas?
     
  2. Footer

    Footer Senior Team Senior Team Premium Member

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    Concept of the show? Type of venue? Type of production? Budget? Time? Current stock?

    Design is something that needs to be learned, not something that we can tell you how to do. Because of that, its hard for us to tell you how you should design, everyone is different. Instead, look at the show and run different ideas past us. We are not going to tell you how to design, we will however help you make sure that the design you decide to implement is a great one.
     
    Last edited: Oct 28, 2008
  3. lighttechie5948

    lighttechie5948 Active Member

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    I'm not looking for someone to design the show for me. But if anyone has designed the show before, or has any ideas I always love to hear them.
     
  4. Footer

    Footer Senior Team Senior Team Premium Member

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    Before we tell you ideas, what ideas do you have? I am all for telling people HOW to do something on the technical side, on the design side though, its more of a steering thing then a how to thing.
     
  5. willbb123

    willbb123 Active Member

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    I love your color choices!
    But seriously... I used to work for a LD who loved R99 (we lovingly called it the poop gel), although I dont remember where he used them. I actually just used two cuts in specials. I use R00 as back light (its the first gel in the strollers).

    back to the OP. I'd love to give you opinions on your ideas or give of my own. But you gave us nothing to work with. And we arent going to design the show for you.
     
  6. rochem

    rochem Well-Known Member

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    Basically, Charc's right. It's all about getting to know the script and the show better until you have a basic idea of what kinds of lighting you're gonna need. Every show, and even every production of every show, can and should differ. Start by reading the script once or twice as Charc said, then start to draw very general ideas about what you'll need to do. Such as, is this in general a happy show with lots of saturated bright colors, or a more depressed show taking advantage of shadow and darker colors? Then you just go on from there, gradually becoming more and more specific over the next couple months. Spend as much time as you can watching rehearsals, especially later ones once the actors are out of book. Listening to an actor say a line will help you figure out the meaning behind that line and the significance that it plays in the show. After a while, certain themes and ideas will start to jump out at you, and when they do, take advantage of them! if you do, then the audience will also start to feel these ideas subconsiously, which will make the show more meaningful for them as well as help to connect it together. When you walk out of a major broadway musical or something, what feeling sticks with you? Is it a lesson or an idea that the show was trying to convey? While you may not even realize it consiously, there's usually some kind of a message that the show attempted to pass along. When these ideas that are put forth by the actors are reinforced by lighting, it makes it so much stronger, because getting the ideas from the actors relies primarily on interpreting what you hear, while lighting provides those same ideas visually.

    This is just the way I like to design however. It's by no means the only way, and there's probably at least one person who will say why NOT to do it this way. However, it works pretty well for me. Read the script until you are absolutely sick of seeing it, and then read it some more. Spend as much time at rehearsals as your schedule will allow. Buy a copy of the original cast recording and listen to that too, and eventually certain things in the score will start to give you ideas about how you want to approach lighting. Remember, the idea of lighting is to reinforce what the director is doing - so spend time watching how the director uses the actors on stage, and that will give you a good idea of where he's going with the show.

    Short version: The first step to lighting a show is understanding a show, and the first step to understanding a show is becoming familiar with a show. Have fun!
     
  7. icewolf08

    icewolf08 CBMod CB Mods

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    See this thread. And this post.
     
  8. TimMiller

    TimMiller Well-Known Member

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    I invision all of my shows in my head. So first i do a walk through of the facility so i can get the basic layout in my head. Then i sit down to read through the script. I read through it getting a general idea what is going on, as far as time of day, invisioned scenery (if they dont already have it built for me to look at) and make note of any directors notes. I then read it through a second time and tweak on my mental design. After load in i put my mental show into the console, and then start to edit it, add and subtract from it during dress rehersal. I program right along with the rehersal and note cues. So after the first dress rehersal i have pretty much the entire show put together. what gets tricky is when they rehearse second act before first act, so i then program second act then first act, then cut and paste it together.
     
  9. genericcomment

    genericcomment Member

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    R00 is 100% transparency, and only there because you can't have an open slot on a scroller, it's clear....
     
  10. bdkdesigns

    bdkdesigns Active Member Fight Leukemia

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    Heat Shield
     
  11. ship

    ship Senior Team Emeritus Premium Member

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    Agreed on before we tell you, what do you have. Used to tell my designers, just design it already, don't worry about details or budget, that's my job. Same concept. You make that magic, we figure out how to where difficult or with budget and stock. First the magic and concept. Once that's done, it is a question of scale, importance, budget and solution. Them's the easy part. Love that show as with 'Our Country's Good.'
     
  12. ship

    ship Senior Team Emeritus Premium Member

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    Well said. Once did a design for 'Italian American Reconcilliation' and found myself at the library listening to the record of the opera 'Turnadot' as that and other places is where it lead me. Used to spend hours and hours reading and researching where ever it took me my interests and side lines into research into the play while in school, learned tremendous amounts about even stuff like courigated steel decking while studying into 'West Side Story' yet it helped my design and while in school I found time for such things and it helped.

    Out of school, I didn't have as much time to let me both put bread on the table and do design as with school following it in research where it took me. Still did a bunch of it but not near as much overall or to where it took me. While in school do it because that is the time to learn lots. Out of school I more followed especially for the lighting, the watching the show a lot, even sketching out blocking during it and sketching out visions or ideas a lot.

    Both worked to an extent, vision cannot work without reality of the live action, vision without a breadth of info and ideas found also is limited.

    For me, one very defining moment of my best designs however was always the same. Study and or get so involved with the show that at some point I had a dream about it. That close to living in the production. Two, how about five times reading the script and or living thru rehearsals with it more. Live the script, play production, research into it and at some point have a dream of that production - your design for it. Don't have to go far with the dream but once you realize that dream is happening in your sleep, get up, you are excited already and start sketching. Don't try to draft or finish drawing it up initially, just wake up and start to sketch it up. Page by page, immediately reveal what you saw for those moments that were important.

    Later once the drawing is out of you come back and color in and or get closer to the color choices while still immediate.

    Once that base and vision is there in having gotten that involved research can stop other than what's important for solutions. At that point the closer in time to that dream and or primary finalized ideal for your visions you can get in drafting and designing what you see the beter and work hard in getting what you can done. Don't again work on details yet work on beam angles and general senses. Later if out of say Lekos to do something or wrong angles your square head part can figure that part out. First the vision, than the conveying it and do talk with the director ASAP soon after, than the initial details and beam angles. Than for the rest of the period drafting and finalizing or refining the design.

    For me at least, the best shows followed a dream that brought it all together for me as dreaming is meant to do.
     

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