Opening this Thursday is a very well automated “sunroof door” and elevator in The Old Globe Theatre’s production of Shakespeare’s The Winter’s Tale. The production is opening as well, but we get excited about slick sunroof doors and smooth stage lifts.
When technicians from The Old Globe called Friday to clarify a detail in our Spikemark software, Gareth couldn’t resist asking the renowned theatre company what scenic choreography was up their sleeve this time. They very kindly sent this video of their automated stage lift / sunroof door.
The motions of the lift lowering and sunroof doors closing are the results of two of our classic Stagehand’s and one Stagehand FX . The Stagehands are used to control two electric motors (one for the lift, the other for the sunroof door), and the Stagehand FX controls the pneumatics to lock the lift in place. All three are managed via Spikemark software.
In total The Winter’s Tale will utilize 7 Stagehand units, and 3 FX units throughout 40 cues. However, this is nothing new for the veteran scene staff, a few members of which are shown below installing the lift structure in the traproom.
To say we are excited about the work at The Old Globe Theatre is a clear understatement, in fact it would be hard to exaggerate our enthusiasm. Not only are they currently producing a play with one of the best stage directions in all of the Shakespeare canon, “Exit, pursued by a bear,” but they also are continuing their tradition of expert scenic construction and automation. We are proud to have our gear in the wings.
If you are in the San Diego area we recommend seeing this production, and please let us know how you enjoyed their scenic automation.
Best of luck with opening night of The Winter’s Tale!