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50th Anniversary Tour

4th November 2008

West Side StoryStage Electrics is supplying all lighting and video elements for the 50th anniversary UK tour of West Side Story. Stage Electrics is proud to be working with the Ambassador Theatre Group, producers of this new production, which started its run at the New Victoria Theatre, Woking and will continue to play at venues across the UK for a year long tour.

With groundbreaking choreography by the legendary Jerome Robbins, book by Arthur Laurents, an unforgettable score by Leonard Bernstein and lyrics by Stephen Sondheim, West Side Story changed the face of musical theatre for ever. The show is based on Shakespeare's Romeo and Juliet and packed with unforgettable songs. The tour marks 50 years after the show made its London debut and is a vibrant new production of the original classic, directed and choreographed by Joey McKneely.
Stage Electrics is supplying an ETC EOS Console, complete with tracking back-up, which is the third EOS desk Stage Electrics has supplied to a theatrical production alongside Zorro the Musical and Flashdance the Musical. An ETC ION Console has also been employed to make the moving light focus easier. Moving lights have been specified in the form of 16 Martin Professional Mac 700 Profile Units, 16 Martin Mac 2000 Wash Units, 2 Martin Mac 2000 Performance units, 20 Martin Professional Stagebars and almost 50 scrollers.
The sophisticated video set-up includes two Catalyst V4 Pro Media Servers which were custom built for the production and utilise some of the latest high definition technology. Two Sanyo LCD XF46 Projectors are at the front end providing extremely bright output from their 12,000 lumen sources. Video plays a very large part within the production with a complete cyclorama cloth acting as a canvas for the projectors to provide full width and height images overlaying each other to achieve maximum brightness.
The original lighting designer for the production was Peter Halbsgut with the UK & European tour being lit by designer & programmer Adam Sutton. Sutton chose to re-programme the UK tour using the ETC EOS Console. He achieved this by using Wysiwyg during the time he was in Sadlers Wells with the European tour, he was also able to programme the video content for the show by pre-programming the Catalyst V4 Pro Servers utilising the EOS Console. The complete control system was setup in Stage Electrics' London Bridge facility for several days, to allow the entire show to be pre-programmed.
Ten custom boom towers were fabricated for the tour allowing the production crew to pre-rig the booms with the scrollers. This enabled the whole structure to be packed in a truck fully rigged, saving time during each fit-up.
Production manager for this year long tour is Simon Gooding. This is the second time in as many months Stage Electrics has worked with Gooding, having also supplied all lighting equipment for the current UK tour of 'Flashdance The Musical'. Working with Simon for West Side Story was production electrician Alistair Mullen and touring chief Chris Vaughan.

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