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Royal Opera House

14th May, 2009

Apollo Right ArmStage Electrics was only too pleased to help out when The Royal Opera House requested a solution to help create a realistic lighthouse effect for their spectacular production of Wagner's The Flying Dutchman, directed by Tim Albery. Michael Levine's set design took a ship's hull and lay it on its side which created the backdrop of a northern fishing town dominated by the sea, its trawlers and the men who follow the hard life on board. In the background, sitting above the abstracted landscape was placed a series of giant lighthouse lenses, with the request that they were able to pan and tilt and become an animated part of the piece.

Simon Bennison, lighting manager at The Royal Opera House comments: 'We needed a solution to hide the mechanics of the moving. lens. An early thought was to resurrect Pirouettes as the simplest yoke unit with a decent light source of relatively small size. While enquiring about their availability from Stage Electrics, we learnt of the Apollo Right Arm yoke. As this was a new piece of equipment, we thought to try it!'.

Following this, Stage Electrics supplied the major venue with 9 Apollo Right Arms which resulted in the lighthouse effect they had desired at the start of the planning process. The advantages of using the Apollo Right Arm were clear from the outset and allowed the production designers to place any unit on the yoke. The lantern and Right Arm were then handed-over to The Royal Opera House's props department who fashioned the metal skeleton holding frame and counterweight for the lens.

Simon Bennison, has been delighted with the breakthrough purchase and continues: 'The centre Right Arm was plotted with a repeated sweep sequence which recreated an exact lighthouse beam, with the channel intensity rising over a set amount of passes timed with the music. Thank you to Stage Electrics for recommending and supplying the product.'

Mark Burnett, business development manager at Stage Electrics comments: 'We are pleased that we were able to provide a solution to the initial problem and that the end effect surpassed the production team's expectations. It has been a great honour to work with The Royal Opera House and we are delighted to continue our ongoing relationship with them.'

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