The Backstage Handbook
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This vital handbook for directors just starting out offers an overview of historic and current practice as well as key theories, professional advice, interviews with practitioners and a series of exercises to develop the director’s own approach and practical skills.
In this newly revised second edition, veteran stage designers and technical directors Dennis Dorn and Mark Shanda introduce industry-standard drafting and designing practices with step-by-step discussions, illustrations, worksheets, and problems to help students develop and refine drafting and other related skills needed for entertainment set production work. By incorporating the foundational principles of both hand- and computer-drafting approaches throughout the entire book, the authors illustrate how to create clear and detailed drawings that advance the production process. Early chapters focus on the basics of geometric constructions, orthographic techniques, soft-line sketching applications, lettering, and dimensioning. Later chapters discuss real-life applications of production drawing and ancillary skills such as time and material estimation and shop-drawing nomenclature. Two chapters detail a series of design and shop drawings required to mount a specific design project, providing a guided path through both phases of the design/construction process. Most chapters conclude with one or more worksheets or problems that provide readers with an opportunity to test their understanding of the material presented. The authors' discussion of universal CAD principles throughout the manuscript provides a valuable foundation that can be used in any computer-based design, regardless of the software. Dorn and Shanda treat the computer as another drawing tool, like the pencil or T-square, but one that can help a knowledgeable drafter potentially increase personal productivity and accuracy when compared to traditional hand-drafting techniques. Drafting for the Theatre, second edition assembles in one book all the principal types of drawings, techniques, and conventional wisdom necessary for the production of scenic drafting, design, and shop drawings. It is richly illustrated with numerous production examples and is fully indexed to assist students and technicians in finding important information. It is structured to support a college-level course in drafting, but will also serve as a handy reference for the working theatre professional.
The Stage Lighting Handbook is well established as the classic practical lighting guide. The book explains the process of designing lighting for all forms of stage production and describes the equipment used. This new edition includes up-to-date information on new equipment and discusses its impact on working methods.
Completely updated to reflect state-of-the-art standards in today's fast-changing theater technology, Technical Theater for Nontechnical People helps actors, dancers, playwrights, and directors to understand every aspect of a traditional and digitally supported backstage environment-from scenery, lighting, and sound to props, costumes, and stage management. All sides of production are clearly explained in jargon-free prose, and unfamiliar terms are highlighted and defined in an appended glossary. In addition to discussions on the more traditional elements of technical theater, this book gives equal weight to the new technologies that have become mainstream, including software (DMX, MIDI, and SMPTI) for show control systems, software to build audio cues, and PC-based audio play-back systems.
An indispensable reference for actors, singers, and dancers, The Back Stage Actor's Handbook has been totally updated to guide tomorrow's performing artist to success.
With the skills of a playwright, the vision of a producer, and the wisdom of an experienced teacher, David Rush offers a fresh and innovative guide to interpreting drama in A Student Guide to Play Analysis, the first undergraduate teaching tool to address postmodern drama in addition to classic and modern. Covering a wide gamut of texts and genres, this far-reaching and user-friendly volume is easily paired with most anthologies of plays and is accessible even to those without a literary background. Contending that there are no right or wrong answers in play analysis, Rush emphasizes the importance of students developing insights of their own. The process is twofold: understand the critical terms that are used to define various parts and then apply these to a particular play. Rush clarifies the concepts of plot, character, and language, advancing Aristotle's concept of the Four Causes as a method for approaching a play through various critical windows. He describes the essential difference between a story and a play, outlines four ways of looking at plays, and then takes up the typical structural devices of a well-made play, four primary genres and their hybrids, and numerous styles, from expressionism to postmodernism. For each subject, he defines critical norms and analyzes plays common to the canon. A Student Guide to Play Analysis draws on thoughtful examinations of such dramas as The Cherry Orchard, The Good Woman of Setzuan, Fences, The Little Foxes, A Doll House, The Glass Menagerie, and The Emperor Jones. Each chapter ends with a list of questions that will guide students in further study.
Collaboration is the most important facet of any theatrical company. From the performers on stage to the choreographers, designers and technicians working behind the scenes, this book considers all departments working on a production and instructs them on how to unify their individual skills towards a shared goal. From Vaudeville to classical opera, this book establishes the skills that each specialist brings to the production process before demonstrating how each individual contribution can be utilized in tandem with all other creative teams. With particular focus on enhancing interdepartmental communication, Collaborating Backstage examines all the challenges that may befall artistic companies and projects made up of many different parts. This book explains how to understand technical jargon within teams that speak a variety of languages and come from different cultural backgrounds; how to recognise and follow the 'unwritten rules' of theatre; and how best to achieve the ultimate creative potential of a team working completely in sync. Underpinned by incisive theories on performance, communication and creativity, Collaborating Backstage is full of helpful illustrations and innovative methods to achieve effective working relationships in the theatre.
Illustrated Theatre Production Guide delivers a step-by-step approach to the most prevalent and established theatreproduction practices, focusing on essential issues related to the construction of wooden, fabric, plastic, and metal scenery used on the stage. A must-have resource for both the community theatre worker who must be a jack of all trades and the student who needs to learn the fundamentals on his or her own, it covers the necessities in great detail, without bogging you down. Offering techniques and best-practice methods from an experienced industry expert, it will allow you to create a foundation on which to build a successful and resourceful career behind the scenes in theatre production. This third edition has been completely restructured to more effectively lead you through the basics of stagecraft. Through detailed lessons and hundreds of drawings, author John Holloway offers you solutions to the problems that you’ll face every day in a production, from rigging to knot tying. New to this edition are guides to jobs in theatre, construction documentation, and video projection methods, with expanded information on Thrust Theatres, lighting, audio and video practices.
The essential guide for anyone interested in working backstage or in the technical areas of theatre.
Comprehensive. Detailed. Practical. Set Lighting Technician's Handbook, Fourth Edition, is a friendly, hands-on manual covering the day-to-day practices, equipment, and tricks of the trade essential to anyone doing motion picture lighting, including the lamp operator, rigging crew, gaffer, best boy, or director of photography. This handbook offers a wealth of practical technical information, useful techniques, as well as aesthetic discussions. The Set Lighting Technician's Handbook focuses on what is important when working on-set: trouble-shooting, teamwork, set protocol, and safety. It describes tricks and techniques for operating a vast array of lighting equipment including LEDs, xenons, camera synchronous strobes, black lights, underwater units, lighting effects units, and many others. Since its first edition, this handy on-set reference continues to be widely adopted as a training and reference manual by union training programs as well as top university film production programs. New to the fourth edition: * Detailed information on LED technology and gear * Harmonized with union safety and training procedures * All the latest and greatest DMX gadgets, including remote control systems * Many new and useful lights and how to use them and troubleshoot them. * New additions to the arsenal of electrical distribution equipment that make our sets safer and easier to power. * More rigging tricks and techniques. * the same friendly, easy to read style that has made this book so popular.
Offers advice, for both professional and amateur stage managers, on putting on a show, discussing its three phases, and includes information on the organizational structure of theaters and how to manage human behavior
The Theatrical Firearms Handbook is the essential guide to navigating the many decisions that are involved in the safe and effective use of firearm props for both the stage and screen. This book establishes baseline safety protocol while empowering performers and designers to tell their story of conflict in a way that makes the most of both established convention and current tools of the trade. Within these pages are practical instruction couched in the language of theatre and film, making firearms technology and concepts approachable to dramatic artists without any dumbing-down of the subject material. It contains over 100 illustrations This handbook is equally at home within the worlds of academic training, professional performance, and independent or community theatre and video productions, and is an invaluable resource for fight choreographers, props designers, backstage crew, directors, actors, stage managers, and more, at all levels of experience.
Nineteen chapters detailing all the fundamentals of backstage work -- all the tools and the language which apply to any theatre operation. The book is loaded with photographs, illustrations and diagrams of the text material. The what, when and why of stagecraft. Selected for the Baker and Taylor Approval Program. A 76-page saddle-stitched book with all general answers and completed crossword puzzles. Includes an editable CD-rom with quizzes, tests, exam and student workbook information.
Running a spotlight is harder than it looks. To do it well, you need to understand how the light and its controls work, you need some training, and you need some practice. Unfortunately, for many people, your first exposure to operating a spotlight is getting handed a pile of color and directions to the spot booth or catwalk one day when people are short, and maybe, if you're lucky, getting a quick rundown on the controls from someone in a hurry to get to their own place before the show starts.This book is an attempt to give you the information that, in at least my opinion, every good spotlight operator should know. It isn't really a substitute for hands-on training and experience, but it's a start.