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Focus on Theater

Adopting a New Role

Michael S. Eddy •
  • Focus on Theater
  • October 2018
• October 13, 2018
Elation is Moving from Concerts and Nightclubs to the Theatrical Stage How do you develop a line of lighting products that work for the particular needs of theater? If you are Elation Professional, you ask theatrical lighting designers directly what they need, what they want and you take those answers into product development. Three theatrical […] Read More...

Illusion to Reality

Randi Minetor •
  • Focus on Theater
  • September 2018
• September 14, 2018
Thom Weaver’s Lighting Plays a Key Role in Macbeth, Fun Home Is there a “normal” way to interpret Shakespeare in 21st century theater? The days of recreating Elizabethan England seem to be behind us, as today’s directors place their productions anywhere they like and use the Bard’s intricate language and story lines to create a […] Read More...

Savannah Ballet Turns to Projections for Magical Production of ‘The Little Mermaid’

Randi Minetor •
  • Focus on Theater
  • June 2018
• June 4, 2018
In 2015, when Savannah Ballet Theatre mounted its first production of Hans Christian Andersen’s The Little Mermaid, artistic director Suzanne Braddy and educational director/choreographer Abby McCuen began to think about ways to make the stage setting as exciting as the dancers’ fluid movements. The company has two costume designers, Siobhan McGrath and Milla Wilkes-Davies, who […] Read More...

Scenery Rental Houses Migrate to Digital Backdrops

Randi Minetor •
  • Focus on Theater
  • June 2018
• June 3, 2018
New and Traditional Companies Meet Customer Demand for Projected Scenery After more than 80 years in the scenery rental business, Grosh Backdrops and Drapery recognized the new handwriting on the wall. More and more of the company’s customers came to them looking for digital scenery — backdrops that they could project, instead of renting and […] Read More...

‘Rocktopia’ on Broadway: A Classic(al) Mashup

Bryan Reesman •
  • Focus on Theater
  • May 2018
• May 14, 2018
The latest concert experience to recently hit Broadway, Rocktopia presented song movements that combined classical music with classic rock in a colorful way that strived for a fluid synergy of the two genres. The 62-piece choir/orchestra/rock band ensemble not only linked the music together — for example, Richard Strauss’ “Also Sprach Zarathustra” led into The […] Read More...

It’s a Christmas Miracle – ‘A Christmas Carol’ at the Geva Theatre Center in Rochester, NY

Randi Minetor •
  • Focus on Theater
  • January 2018
• January 11, 2018
The current production of Charles Dickens' classic story, A Christmas Carol, was the 32nd annual version of the show at the Geva Theatre Center in Rochester, NY. When it got its start in 1985, the technical crew breathed a sigh of relief that the one-season wonder made it through the holidays. Now the show is a firmly established Christmas tradition in upper New York State. Read More...
Lighting levels had to be balanced for the human eye and camera. Photos by Joan Marcus

Capturing ‘Holiday Inn’ for Posterity

PLSN Staff •
  • Articles
  • December 2017
  • Focus on Theater
• December 14, 2017

The Art of Recording a Live Play on Camera

For theater lovers, nothing beats the experience of witnessing a show in person. But when one does not have the opportunity, watching it onscreen is the next best thing. BroadwayHD has begun capturing more and more shows for posterity and streaming them live from their website. One of the latest musicals to receive renewed digital life is Holiday Inn, the bright, peppy, colorful show inspired by Irving Berlin movie musical that wowed Broadway audiences last holiday season. It was first streamed live from Studio 54 last year.

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The musical by Lin-Manuel Miranda was staged at Geva Theatre Center. The morning after a power outage in Washington Heights, dawn lighting brings life to the cast of In the Heights. Photo by Goat Factory Media.

‘In the Heights,’ in Rochester, NY

PLSN Staff •
  • Focus on Theater
  • October 2017
• October 12, 2017

Upper Manhattan is Reborn Upstate

Take a Tony Award-winning musical featuring a large cast of dancers and flamboyant choreography infused with salsa, merengue and hip-hop. Surround this cast with scenery that depicts the working storefronts of a bodega, a hair salon and a car service. Light it up with dozens of colors, patterns in motion and — in a purely 21st-century moment — the glow of smartphone screens.

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Jessiee Datino and Jason Kolotouros take the stage as abstract projections change the scene in Other Than Honorable. Photos by Huth Photography

‘Other Than Honorable’

PLSN Staff •
  • Focus on Theater
• June 8, 2017

Lighting and Projection are Critical for World Premiere

From the enthusiasm in his voice as he drove through Los Angeles, lighting designer Josh Epstein had an unmistakable dose of world premiere fever.

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Dear Evan Hansen photo by Matthew Murphy

“Dear Evan Hansen”

PLSN Staff •
  • Focus on Theater
• May 12, 2017

A Balance of Lighting and Video Reflects our Modern World

"A letter that was never meant to be seen, a lie that was never meant to be told, a life he never dreamed he could have, Evan Hansen is about to get the one thing he’s always wanted — a chance to finally fit in.” That’s the premise behind this humorous musical, which would certainly appeal to anyone who ever thought they were on the outside looking in. Especially when browsing social media sites.

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The Nutcracker (Alberto Velazquez) and Marie (Amanda Assucena) dance under the dramatically expanded tree during the battle with the rats. Photo by Cheryl Mann

Re-imagining ‘The Nutcracker’

PLSN Staff •
  • Focus on Theater
• February 9, 2017

Christopher Wheeldon's Nutcracker, at the Joffrey Ballet Chicago, Revitalizes a Holiday Classic

The strains of Tchaikovsky’s lush, spritely overture soar as the Chicago Philharmonic begins The Nutcracker, but when the curtain rises, we find that we are not, as we may expect, in the expansive living room of a traditional Victorian home. Instead, it’s Christmas Eve 1892 in Chicago, and one family on the outskirts of town conducts its fairly frugal preparations for Christmas Day.

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Jean Shepherd (Chris Carsten) and Myles Moore (Ralphie) extol the virtues of the Red Ryder air rifle. 4Wall provided the touring package to facilitate the show’s needs. Photo by Jesse Schreve

Ralphie, Get Your Gun!

PLSN Staff •
  • Focus on Theater
• January 13, 2017

Taking A Christmas Story on Tour

It began as the reminiscences of an old storyteller, but it grew to become one of our best-loved tales of the yuletide season — and now it’s a singing, dancing celebration of the youthful anticipation of Christmas morning. A Christmas Story, the live stage show adapted from the 1983 movie, takes a tale of 1940s Midwestern America and turns it into an extravagant fantasy that spins from the mind of an eleven-year-old boy.

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