Technical Theatre

A Look at the Masks and the Puppets in The Lion King

via www.stage-directions.com It was this week 21 years ago, Oct. 15, 1997 to be precise, that The Lion King played its first preview and audiences first saw the beautiful and intricate costumes, masks and puppetry so central to the narrative and to the unique experience of the production. Adam Savage and the team at Tested went backstage at The Lion King during its run in San Francisco in this video visit to the musical’s puppet shop, where puppet supervisor Michael Reilly walked them through the numerous intricate and varied puppets and masks used in the performance and showed how they’re maintained in their traveling workshop. The production and design credits for the show when it opened at the New Amsterdam Theatre were: Scenic Design by Richard Hudson Costume Design by Juli...

Candidate registration for the 2019 URTAs is now open!

MFA training in theatre begins with URTA! At the URTAs, you can audition and interview with our 43 member universities all in one place, on a single day. Why navigate dozens of different applications, fees, appointments, and travel when you can get it all done at the URTAs? Choose your city—New York, Chicago, or San Francisco—and register to be seen by our recruiters in either acting, design, directing, stage management, or arts leadership. Our nationally ranked member schools boast professional faculty, a commitment to the highest standards in professional, graduate training, and are peer-reviewed on a continuing basis. Most also offer various forms of financial assistance. Graduates of URTA programs are working on Broadway, in top theatres across the country, in film, television, and bey...

Register for the 4th Annual Vectorworks Design Summit

4th Annual Vectorworks Design Summit November 4-6, 2018 Phoenix, AZ We’re cranking up the heat at the fourth annual Vectorworks Design Summit. Join us in sunny Arizona at the Sheraton Grand at Wild Horse Pass for an exciting three days of indispensable workshops, inspired design, and improved connections. Located in the breathtaking Sonoran Desert, the Sheraton Grand celebrates the Gila River Indian heritage and culture. Extend your stay and enjoy everything the resort has to offer, including an 18-hole golf course, horseback riding, a world-class spa, and more! Registration You can pay one low price for two full days of in-depth training with Vectorworks software. No matter your industry or level of experience, you can’t afford to miss this valuable opportunity. REGULAR CONFERENCE – $599 ...

Inside the Santa Fe Opera Scene Shop

BY JORDAN EDDY via www.themagsantafe.com “They’ll say, ‘Why won’t it just float there?’” Scott Schreck says with a little smirk. “Then I go, ‘I’ll tell you what, let me work on that antigravity device for you.’” He’s talking through the joys and difficulties of translating artistic visions to brick and mortar, his principal mission as technical director of the Santa Fe Opera. Moments later, Schreck reveals that he may, in fact, possess gravity-defying powers. In his last job, a five-and-a-half-year stint as technical director of Arena Stage in Washington, D.C., one production called for a full bandstand to hover above the stage. “It was [Rodgers and Hammerstein’s] Carousel. They wanted a gazebo on top of a platform, with two bridges extending from it so the actors could walk across,” he sa...

Props Fabricator: Fur, Foam & Focus

BY: MICHAEL EDDY via www.stage-directions.com In The Shop with Props Fabricator Zoë Morsette Zoë Morsette knew at an early age that she wanted to work in the theater. Inspired by a childhood filled with art and summer theater on Cape Cod where she grew up, Morsette completed her BA in theater and dance at Skidmore College in 1973 and then moved to NYC. She worked as a milliner at Radio City Music Hall for two years and then as a shop supervisor and fabricator in the display industry for five years. Freelance since 1984, Morsette has built props, models, costumes, and puppets for 51 Broadway productions, dozens of commercials and print ads, feature films, television shows, theme parks, ice shows, ballets, operas, and the Macy’s Parade. Morsette spoke with Stage Directions to discuss her wor...

OPINION: Is Augmented Reality the Future of Stagecraft?

BY HOWARD SHERMAN via www.thestage.co.uk A recent article in the Sydney Morning Herald declared that the director of Opera Australia “is staking much of the future and reputation of the national opera company on a digital revolution designed to immerse audiences and create an experience more akin to watching a movie than traditional opera”. To deploy a shopworn phrase usually applied to shows where the story is weak but the physical production stunning, it sounds as if there’s a desire to have Sydney opera-goers come out humming the scenery. The article focuses on the opera company’s extensive use of flat-screen video technology in its upcoming production of Aida. I write with no knowledge of the Australian opera scene and limited knowledge of current opera production, but it sounds as if ...

Busch Gardens: Now Hiring Event Install Technicians

Overview Are your the type of person who: Likes to work with your hands? Enjoys finding creative solutions? Appreciates hard work and participating in a team environment that leads to great results? Loves to put a smile on someone’s face? If this describes you, we have immediate openings for 6 to 10 seasonal Event Install Technicians at Busch Gardens Williamsburg. We have a fast paced work environment where fun is the key. The positions will be for 4 to 6 months and give you opportunities to expand your resume and experience. Primary purpose and function of the Event Install Technician position: Executes Entertainment Event Installation and Deconstruction. Collaborates with Entertainment Production/Operations, Theming, and Theatrical Services teams to achieve project goals and object...

Scene Shops: The General Layout

BY GEORGE LEDO via www.setdesignandtech.wordpress.com Now and then I see a post in the Educational Theatre Association (EdTA) open forum regarding ideas for a new scene shop, or tools, or something related, so I decided to do a few pieces here. This first one is about scene shops in general, the second will be about work areas and storage of tools and equipment, and subsequent ones will be about related subjects. First off, a scene shop is nothing more than a dedicated place to build custom items which may be made of wood, plastic, metal, or other materials. The process, the tools, the ideal layout, and everything else are pretty much the same as in any other custom shop that specializes in these materials, the main difference being that the scene shop is used to build scenery instead of c...

Sound designers celebrate the return of their Tony Awards categories

BY CAITLIN HUSTON via www.broadway.news The Tony Award categories for sound design are back with a boom. Eleven sound designers of plays and musicals were nominated for Tony Awards this season, five years after the categories had been eliminated from consideration. With the return of the category comes a new voting system and a reinvigorated community supporting the designers and their work. “It’s an honor to be nominated in a category that has come back from the dead,” said Kai Harada, sound designer on “The Band’s Visit.” The Tony Awards for sound design was first awarded in 2008 and then taken away in 2014 without explanation by the Tony Awards Administration Committee. A New York Times article from that time cited two Tony voters who said voters largely did not know how to evaluate sou...

How To Make a Marking Gauge for Curves

BY CHRISTOPHER SCHWARZ via www.popularwoodworking.com If you work with curves, you need a marking gauge that can deal with curves. Me, I make chairs. So I need a gauge that can follow the curve of a seat so I can delineate the lines for the scooped-out saddle, the spindles and the “gutter” – a shallow and decorative channel on traditional chairs. I also need a gauge such as this for marking out the armbow and the crest rail. These curves on a chair are convex and generally represent one radius. So the easiest solution is to use a marking gauge that has two points (instead of a flat face) that will follow a curve. This type of gauge was once quite common. And you can still buy them new if you look hard enough. A simple solution is to modify your existing marking gauge so it can follow curve...

How -To: Benches from ‘Beautiful Star’

BY ERIC HART via http://www.props.eric-hart.com A few months ago, Triad Stage put on their Christmas show, Beautiful Star. Though it was a remount, it had some major design changes this year. For the props shop, we needed to build six church benches that could be rearranged throughout the show to create various “locations.” For the quatrefoil cut-out, I laid out the pattern with a compass and cut it with a jigsaw. I sanded it smooth using a sanding drum that was nearly the same diameter as the individual circles in the pattern. Cutting the quatrefoils I took the time to make one of the quatrefoils as perfect as possible, and then used a pattern cutting bit on my router to cut the rest of the side panels. I needed twelve panels for the six benches I was making. So many panels The team wante...

Carnival Entertainment: Technician Postitions NOW HIRING

AUDIO TECHNICIAN OVERVIEW: The Audio Technician is responsible for the safe and proper operation of all the audio systems in the main theater for all shows and activities (includes full-cast production shows, magic shows, variety shows, Welcome Aboard Show, Carnival Legends Show, Game Shows, lounge talks & presentations and more). You are also responsible for the cleaning, maintenance and ensuring the proper functioning of all audio systems in the various venues around the ship. APPLY FOR THIS JOB AUTOMATION TECHNICIAN OVERVIEW: The Automation technician is the operator of the automated stage rigging system in the main theater (up to 32 automated drops) for all shows and activities (includes full-cast production shows, magic shows, variety shows, Welcome Aboard Show, Carnival Legends S...