With Technical Rehearsals for ‘Guys and Dolls’ starting on Monday morning, Friday night was the sound dept’s first opportunity to get the cast on stage with their microphones and basically make sure it all worked! And obviously it did, but year 3 sound mixer George Lumkin also got to work with our award-winning sound designer Gareth Owen on the shiny new DiGiCo SD10T mixing console to set levels and equalisation on all the mics so it was all ready for Monday. This was also the first time that the actors and singers got to see the impressive set and hear their voices amplified on stage. This will ensure that Monday morning doesn’t come as too much of a new experience, although still obviously very exciting. Check out the photos below for a brief insight into the evening’s events.
As any West End musical sound department will tell you, radio microphones can get through a lot of batteries! Especially when you have a cast of thirty singers and each mic takes two AA batteries that get renewed for every rehearsal and every show! Using standard alkaline batteries means a lot of these get discarded (or hopefully recycled) after just a few hours use as nobody wants to risk a principal singer going quiet in the big finale! Or indeed any singer at any point during the show.
The use of rechargeable batteries has slowly been filtering through the industry over recent years as they become more and more reliable with the ability to guarantee a good 5 – 8 hours use, and stay useful after at least 2000 re-charges. In its continuing effort to reflect current (and future) industry standards the Sound department of the Theatre Technology pathway has taken the green leap and invested in a stock of rechargeable batteries and chargers in time for the upcoming musical, ‘Guys and Dolls’. With potentially thirty radio mics on stage at once (each needing two AA batteries) we’ve bought 128 cells and 16 chargers. This will allow us to have a rotating schedule of power for the radio mics and spares if we need them. The chargers are ‘intelligent chargers’ and will give precise information about how each battery is holding up – how much charge it can still hold and whether it needs completely discharging etc.
In an effort to keep our new investment safe and sound (as it were) one of our current year 2 mic runners, Rosie Stroud, is making a bespoke, custom-built home for the chargers to live in which will house the power supplies as well (see photo below) and ensure that the whole package is good for what we are sure will be a long and powerful lifetime!
The Sound dept. of the Theatre Technology pathway today took delivery of a brand new DiGiCo SD10T digital mixing console as used by various ‘West End’ theatres in London and across the world. The new console will continue the Guildhall School’s commitment to ensuring its students are taught on the latest industry-standard equipment and the new desk is being thrown in at the deep end with its first show being the up-coming musical, ‘Guys and Dolls’, due to open on 7th July. Working with award-winning sound designer Gareth Owen and his associate Mike Thacker, the sound team are currently in the middle of fit-up for the show with third year student George Lumkin (Sound Mixer and already a bit of a DiGiCo expert) setting up the new desk for its debut. Check out the photos below for a quick glimpse of this morning’s excitement. (Our thanks to Peppe at Autograph Sales & Installations for all his support and help with the new desk.)
As one of their year 1 design projects the Theatre Technology students are given an interesting prop around which they create a story in light. Lighting Design Lecturer Nick Peel leads the 2-week project as the students build their sets, source their sound accompaniment and then use the skills learnt from Nick to light their scenes in interesting and imaginative ways. The class is divided into small groups (from 1 to 3 students) and each performs their finished project to an invited audience in the Theatre Technology Lab in Silk Street. Check out the videos below for a glimpse into how they turned out.
So it’s that time of year again and last night saw the opening of the 2015 Technical Theatre Arts Graduate Exhibition in the Milton Court Studio Theatre. Third year students from across all three TTA pathways (Theatre Technology, Design Realisation and Stage and Costume Management) got the opportunity to show off their significant efforts from the last three years to various industry professionals, TTA alumni, future TTA students and of course lots of friends and family. The show will stay open all day today and tomorrow (10th and 11th June) 11 – 5 so please come down to Milton Court and have a look.
If you can’t make it in person check out the photos below for brief glimpse of last night’s grand opening!
As part of their year 2 allocations all our students complete a sound and video project that relates to the production they have been working on. As you may have already read, we’ve recently completed a run of ‘Burnt by the Sun’ in the Milton Court Theatre (directed by Joe Blatchley) and so two of our students have put together very different videos that give two very different takes on the experience.
Olivia Whittaker has chosen to do a multi-angle shoot that shows a keen insight into the various nuances of the play highlighting the joy, sadness and tragedy of life in Stalin’s 1930’s Russia during the radical purge of potential threats to his rule.
While Rory Beaton has time-lapsed the shows technical story, showing the show’s production crew at work; the various off stage activities; the show itself; and the get-out after the last performance.
Put together both these projects show the different impacts a play like this can have on all the people involved in the production and how much hard work and effort go into giving our audiences the significant theatrical impact a play like this can have.
Thanks to Olivia and Rory for all their hard efforts!
Last week four of our current year three Technical Theatre Arts students – Marie Egetoft (Producer), George Lumkin (Technical Manager and Production Engineer), Michael Woods (Sound Designer) and Alex Uragello (Video Designer) – produced their promenade project ‘The Journey’ based on “the Danish story of the lives of Elvira Madigan and Sixten Sparre.”
The story is based on the tragically true love story of the two main characters who both died for love in the late 1880s. The production was a fifteen minute show filled with scenes, lighting, sound and video depicting the story of the two characters which the audience could traverse through as the story unfolded. The studio theatre was laid on in an innovative fashion that allowed multiple scenes to be played out in various closed-off sections of the space. Check out the photos below for a glimpse of the production which was ably supported with lighting by fellow third year student Neville Billimoria.