Light & Dark

by neel

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Presenting lighting, theatre and weather: formerly from the hills of Yorkshire, with bits and pieces of the Yorkshire Sculpture Park and trips to Edinburgh; when the music stops, where will neel end up?
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Weblog: Enlightening Times
Email: neil at notlikecalvin dot com

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Munich 24: Hostel-ities

(viewed 1462 times)
After the conference dinner we were returned to the city centre via the
most amusing busride ever - imagine some of the world's leading members
of a field of practise, all pretty well-to-do with drink, on a wobbly
bus. With hilarious consequences. Anyway, we went back to the hostel
where a load of the students were staying (why didn't I think of that?
Ah well, I liked my hotel room) and had a few more Desperados. Perhaps
the most amazing non-lighting thing I saw on my trip was this
whose-turn-is-it thing on the pool table; sure, you have to move
everything up one each time, but it solves the which-way-is-the-queue
problem. Note to self: before playing pool in an international hostel
against people from other places, check what rules you'll be using.

Munich 23: The Surprise (clip)

(viewed 686 times)
"We're now to have a special Bavarian surprise," said the conference
chairman, "and we don't know any more than that." Members of the um-pah
band removed the candelabra from some of the tables and stood next to
them on chairs. The accordion struck up a merry tune. Then the world
seemed to explode. We all clapped when they stopped, of course, but
then they started again. And once more. What a lovely surprise!
1st Jun 2005, 00:38   comments (0)

Munich 22: All Change

(viewed 776 times)
In order to keep the party in full swing and everybody on their toes,
each table of ten had four people who'd move around between courses -
two up a table number and two down. So while I was first sat with
Rick Fisher (!) I then moved on to meet quite a few more. The
organisers had done a pretty good job of spacing us all out,
professionals, students, manufacturers and otherwise.
1st Jun 2005, 00:37   comments (0)

Munich 21: Dinner Time

(viewed 727 times)
That's right - we were treated to an um-pah band. The joy. After
feeding us beer mixed with champagne we got back on the bus and went
off to the location of the conference dinner - in a brewery. Cue many
jokes, but this turned out to be a really well organised/paid for
1st Jun 2005, 00:35   comments (0)

Munich 20: Fittingly

(viewed 709 times)
The Staatsoper had these amazing light-fitting-things in its rather
large foyers. Whilst the guys from ETC were showing off their
highly-specific-to-German-opera lighting console I popped downstairs
and got some emergency biscuits from the theatre bar: it would be a
while before dinner.
1st Jun 2005, 00:35   comments (0)

Munich 19: Opera!

(viewed 849 times)
Our last stop was the Beyerische Staatsoper - the State Opera House in Munich. Huge exterior, very grand; five stacked balconies; a very high, fully automated fly-tower. It wasn't quite as big as the Royal Opera House in Covent Garden (according to the ROH's Technical Manager, who was also there): while the ROH has trucks the same size as the stage area for shunting around complete sets, the Staatsoper only has truckable sections of 3m by 7m, so the set has to be broken down and reassembled each time: keeping an 800-strong crew busy almost every day of the year is probably what keeps their 180million Euro/year budget ticking over.
1st Jun 2005, 00:32   comments (0)

Munich 18: Cats!

(viewed 733 times)
Next up we went on- and backstage at the Deutsches Theater in Munich,
where the German tour of Cats was playing until the end of the week.
Nice theatre, stately enough, rebuilt in the 60's. This tour is using
the full 17-truckload version of the show, and the crew is minimal
enough that they're always doing something backstage. The top picture
here is of the cast's drinking bottles neatly laid out, all with straws
to keep their makeup in good shape. Note there's no aisle/s in the
theatre, which may or may not be a standard thing over there.
1st Jun 2005, 00:31   comments (0)

Munich 17: TV Land

(viewed 770 times)
On Monday we went off on some visits to local lighting-type things in
around Munich. First stop, PlazaMedia TV Studios: I'd never been to a
TV studio before, and I was interested in seeing whether they were
actually as boring as people always make out. Our survey says - *DING*.
This place mostly hosts local live sports and quiz shows, and the sets
were rather small and dull. Most interesting was their greenscreen
studio, which used a system of infrared cameras on the grid to pinpoint
the actual camera location/orientation to sync in the background (this
is the reverse of the BBC's Free-D setup).
1st Jun 2005, 00:30   comments (0)