telescreen on stage


A friend is doing lighting design for his High School show '1984'. He has to set up something refered to in the script as a 'telescreen' which will show images. He needs an inexpensive way to set up this up.

All I can think of is using a video projector and a screen or flats painted white, but they are concerned about shadows if the the actors walk in front of the screen.

Any ideas?
Rear Projection or high angles from the front?

In any case, pay special attention to the ambient and stray light hitting the screen. The more light hitting the screen, the more power is going to be necessary to light it.

By the way, Backstage Handbook has a very useful chart on figuring out projector sizing and ranges.

That in addition to this: (but I'm not sure where I got it from so that's a bad thing. Probably either Architectural Graphics Standards or Architect's Handbook of Formulas, Tables & Mathematical Calculations.)

Lenses and Focal points: Screen Projection
The relationship between the positions of the light source or the object (slide) and the point where the transmitted rays from an image is determined by the “Lens Formula”,
When P= the distance from the object to the principal plane of the lens,
Q= the distance from the principal plane to the image, and
F= the focal length of the lens; than 1/P + 1/Q = 1/F.
The maximum distance between the first row of the audience and the screen is determined by the maximum allowable angle between the sight line from the first row to the top of the screen and the perpendicular to the screen at that point. 30 to 35° is recommended.
The maximum distance between the screen and the most distant viewer should not exceed eight times the height of the screen image. A most distant viewer two to three times the screen width is preferred.
Screen width is determined by the use of the appropriate aspect ratio between the screen image height and width.
Curvature of screens may reduce the amount of apparent distortion for a larger audience area. Curvature of a larger screens may help to keep the whole of the image in focus and may provide a more uniform distribution of luminance.
Tilt all projection screens back half the angle of projection whenever the projection angle is over 15°.
Last Jan/Feb/March I was involved the Michigan Interschoolastic Forensic Association Competitive Theater Series (blah, a lot of words!). At the state finals one school did George Orwell's 1984, it was god awful. There set was very nice and they had some very neat ideas. But the tech simply upstaged the acting and whole plot, remember you can easily over do things with this play. They used those digital red scrolling marquees to scroll all those powerful sugguestive quotes from big brother, which was kinda neat. They ran a rear projector with a laptop using some kind of full screen presentation app. The screen was actually a very odd shape and they configured to fit it perfectly, and I believe the projector was mounted on a fairly high studio monitor pedelistal, probably 7' at the least. it looked great. But anyway this school went as far as putting in lighting fixtures in the big brother desks, it was really halarious watching the black outs and having the on stage lighting tech had twistlock to each stagecrew member while the black outs adding up to 3 minutes. Some of their blackouts were just plan disgustingly long. Then again this is all touring theater. But the rear projector mounted up high would look great. If you can mount the projector from a catwalk that wouled projector in front of the actors, thus behind them.
I'm sure the show is already over, but I am about half way through reading the book, and the 'telescreens' are just TV sets but they only spew propaganda. Just use a normal TV, thats what the book says they should be at least.
Oh yeah, that's a really good idea. Read the book, that's probably why the production I saw of it was so horrible. I think know one really read the book or completely understood the concept of the book.

Nice crappy TVs would work. But I really liked the rear projector idea as well, you can make it take shape to the set which really looks awesome. The scrolling marques spewing all propaganda looks great too.

Yeah I definitely think the show is already over. This forum gets less action.

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