Spring Awakening

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Spring Awakening
SA.jpg
Summary
Dates
10th March - 24th March 2018
Performance Course
Third Year BA Musical Theatre
Location
New Atheneum Theatre & Dundee Rep Theatre
Creative Team
Director
Andrew Panton
Associate Director/Choreographer
Anwar Russel
Designer
Kenneth MacLeod
Musical Director
Robert Wilkinson
Sound Designer
Lighting Designer
Assistant 'Lighting Designer
Production Team
Stage Manager
Deputy Stage Manager
Assistant Stage Manager
Assistant Stage Manager
Assistant Stage Manager
Technical Stage Manager
Stage Supervisor Dundee
Head of Flys
Assistant Technical Stage Manager
Assistant Technical Stage Manager
Assistant Technical Stage Manager
Head Electrician
Lighting Programmer
Lighting Crew
Lighting Crew
Lighting Crew
Sound No.2
Sound No.2
Sound Crew


Team

SAteam.jpg

Overview

Spring Awakening is a rock musical with music by Duncan Sheik and a book and lyrics by Steven Sater. It is based on the German play Spring Awakening (1891) by Frank Wedekind. Set in late-19th-century Germany, the musical tells the story of teenagers discovering the inner and outer tumult of teenage sexuality.

Following its conception in the late 1990s and various workshops, concerts, rewrites and its Off-Broadway debut, the original Broadway production of Spring Awakening opened at the Eugene O'Neill Theatre on December 10, 2006. The original Broadway production won eight Tony Awards, including Tonys for Best Musical, Direction, Book, Score and Featured Actor. The production also garnered four Drama Desk Awards, while its original cast album received a Grammy Award. In addition, the show was revived in 2015 on Broadway and garnered three Tony Award nominations, among other honours.

The success of the Broadway production has spawned several other productions worldwide, including various US productions, a short West End production that won four Laurence Olivier Awards including Best New Musical, and a series of international productions. [1]

Musical Numbers

Act I
  • "Mama Who Bore Me" – Wendla
  • "Mama Who Bore Me" (Reprise) – Girls
  • "All That's Known" – Melchior
  • "The Bitch of Living" – Boys
  • "My Junk" – Girls and Boys (Except Ilse)
  • "Touch Me" – Boys and Girls
  • "The Word of Your Body" – Wendla and Melchior
  • "The Dark I Know Well" – Martha, Ilse, Boys
  • "And Then There Were None" – Moritz and Boys
  • "The Mirror-Blue Night" – Melchior and Boys
  • "I Believe" – Boys and Girls
Act II
  • "The Guilty Ones" – Wendla, Melchior, Boys, and Girls
  • "Don't Do Sadness/Blue Wind" – Moritz and Ilse
  • "Left Behind" – Melchior, Boys, and Girls
  • "Totally Fucked" – Melchior and Full Company (except Moritz)
  • "The Word of Your Body" (Reprise) – Hänschen, Ernst, Boys, and Girls
  • "Whispering" – Wendla
  • "Those You've Known" – Moritz, Wendla, and Melchior
  • "The Song of Purple Summer" – Ilse and Full Company

Cast

Max Alexander-Taylor, Casey Anne Apregan, Edward August, Ross Baxter, Louise Duff, Meg Forgan, Grace Galloway, Felicia Gray, Pia Hagen, Emma Harding, Luke Hickman, Barrie Hunter, Ann Louise Ross, Sarah Michelle Kelly, Cerys Lee-Jones, Callum Marshall, Charlie McCullagh, Chiara Sparkes, Bethany Tennick, Lydia White.

Stage Management

Technical Stage Management

Groundplan

TSM Groundplan

TSM Ath Markout

Set Elements

Laying double floor.
Deciding size of the swings in the rehearsal room.
Making of the school desks.
Furniture stack and desks in rehearsal room.

Band Platform/Pit

The band platform was USC. It was made of 6 8x4 steel deck (hired from G12) and a box built from flats (sides and top) with a welded metal window frame at the back. There was a hidden door SR to allow the band and cast to enter and exit out the back.


Static Climbing Frames

There were 2 main static climbing frame structures. These comprised of 2 frames facing US-DS, 2 frames acting as braces for these frames offstage and 2 frames facing SL and SR. This is mirrored on each side of the stage. All frames could be climbed on. The performers could secure themselves into the frames with hand loops that could be placed at specific areas. The frames were made from a mix of metal rungs and timber sides. They were each roughly 1000mm wide x 6000mm high. There were 2 metal braces on the top of the offstage frames. All of the offstage edges were also braced to the deck with wood.


Tracking Climbing Frames

Downstage there were 6 frames that were on fixed castors with an overhead track so that they could be brought on and offstage by the cast. The flown track was suspended from the bottom of a full stage span of HV30 truss. There was track on both the US and DS rungs of the truss. There were 4 (2 SL, 2 SR) frames on the US track and 2 (1 SL, 1 SR) frames that track on the DS. Each frame was 7000mm high to allow for masking of the truss and track. The track was EEE Unibeam and each frame was suspended off 2 Unibeam or unitrack upper heavy duty scenery carrier. The 5 4000mm length of Unibeam bought for The Jungle Book were used as well as 4 small section were borrowed form the Citz to extend the offstage of the track. The truss was ratchet strapped off to each fly floor to prevent movement. 11mm wide and 12mm deep grooves are cut into the floor to reflect each length of track hung from the truss. On the back of each frame was mounted a slider that fits into the groove to guide the frames on and offstage.

School desks

There were a total of 6 school desks used by the boys. Each desk is built to allow the performers to dance, stand, jump etc. on them. There are 2 castors on each desk allowing it to be moved like a wheelbarrow. The lid of each desk is practical allowing it to be flipped up. There was a panel of LED tape controlled by wireless DMX.


Furniture stack

In front of the band riser there was a large collection of furniture both sourced and adapted for the cast to climb on and hide props in.


Furniture truck

The centre area of the furniture stack was a truck. This truck is brought downstage for the song “I Believe”. It was kept in place by 2 drop bolts. It allowed at least 2 people to climb on it. The truck was controlled by the cast.


Masking

In the spirit of rock musicals there is very little masking. The SL and SR undersides of the band platform were masked. There are 2 1400x6000 hard masking flats either side of the stage. These flats are laced together and braced off upstage. This was to hide entrances and exists to the platform as well as quick change areas.


Floor

The floor was 6mm MDF and painted to resemble a gym floor. It was painted in a forced perspective way so that the US area of the floor is significantly smaller than the floor DS. There was second floor laid under it of scrap 6mm MDF to allow for a 12mm deep groove for the tracking frames as well as drop bolt holes for the furniture truck. Each board of sub floor was laid with one screw in the DSC edge. In the Ath the floor was laid from the setting line up/down. When the show was transferred to Dundee the floor was laid from the tracks up/down. This allowed the grooved to be placed directly below the overhead track.

Show Elements

Flown Dress

At the top of the show during the song “Mama Who Bore Me”, Wendla was meant to put on a “floating fairy dress” onstage. The dress had to look like it was suspended by magic. There were 2 magnets sewn into the dress and 2 nuts ties on to lines of fishing line tied to a fly bar. We found for the weight of dress M8 at the end of the fishing wire supported the dress. Read more on the page Flown Costume.


Flown Swings

There were 4 swings used in “My Junk” by the cast. The swings, with performers on them, were flown about above head height while a scene happens below them. The performers were sitting down and were secured with hand loops. Automation (Stage Technologies Bigtow winches) were be used in Glasgow and Kinesis Liftket in Dundee, borrowed from Scottish Opera. The swings are positioned DS of the Tracking Frames. More information on the page Swing.


Performer Flying

There is a human counterweight flying/falling sequence with the suicide of Moritz. This was controlled offstage manually by the TSM Team. Read more on the page Performer Flying.


Raining locker truck

There was a truck of Victorian style lockers that was intended to be used to mimic a shower effect when the doors are opened. The effect was cut during tech due to the sight lines. Read more on the page Rain.


LX boom “trees”

During the scenes in the forest were 6 scaff bars that were flown in with 2 green par cans on each. The scaff bars were all aluminium connected to the fly bars by bolting through a barrel clamp.


Flown Blackboard

The “blackboard” was a flat painted to look like a school blackboard. This flat was hung in front of the band riser to entirely cover the front. It was used to hide and reveal the band as necessary. The board was brailed upstage to prevent light spill from the band platform.

Climbing Frames

In order to refer to specific frames onstage and in paperwork a notation plot was created.

Safety

We brought Mark Gibson from Aerial Edge as a consultant on the climbing of the frames as well as the swings and the Performer Flying.

Mark gave the notes below after the first day onstage with the cast.

Taken from the notes from Mark above, this is a quick reference of what rungs on the frames refer to which notes.

Sliders

The climbing frames had sliders that guided along the groove cut into the stage. This kept the fixed castors from wandering. In Glasgow the sliders were simply pieces of 9mm Birch ply cut to size and screwed into the back of the frames. We had a lot of trouble with the frames jumping out of the track and getting stuck onstage or offstage.

SASR1.png

SASR2.png

Not listed in the notes above was during the first dress a frame got stuck onstage which caused a show stop during an open dress. TSM had to go onstage with a gun and fix the frame by taking off the slider moving the frame into place and re-attaching the slider.

We knew the Ath was a very flat stage but couldn't guarantee the same in Dundee , we needed to find another solution for the sliders in Dundee. Basically we would need something that had play in it to allow for a higher or lower stage. The solutions came in the form a some metal and small bungee. Since these were installed there no more problems with the frames and they also required no tools to fix if the slider jumped out of the track. The cast members would have been able reset the slider in the track without disturbing the action onstage.

SASlider1.png

This render shows the 2 components of the slider. The slider sections (right) is made of 6mm machined steel with a second 6mm section welded to the bottom this allows for gravity to do the job for us by keeping the heavy section in the track. This can also be reversed with the thicker side on top if a thinner track is required.

SASlider2.png

Red lines show the positions of the bungee cord to help keep the slider in the track.

Photo of the sliders

Truss

This drawing shows the truss built for the track. Each side coming up was to ratchet strap it to each fly rail. There were 3 ratchet straps on each side. One 2 ton strap going directly offstage and 2 smaller ones, one going upstage and one going down stage. This worked really well.

Photos

Trees

In order to make the trees fly, we had to find a way to rig them so they hung straight and did not spin. We split the 6 trees on to two bars.

Rigging

Original drawings of rigging ideas.
"Trees" ready to be primed.
Original drawings of rigging ideas.
"Trees" in focus/plot.

Each tree composed of 1 x 6000mm aluminum scaff pole and 1 x 1500mm aluminum scaff pole. These were joined with a long scaff joiner. We drilled through 2 holes in the joiner and bolted through. 2 grub screws were then put back into each. This allowed it to be safe to fly as well as tight. Each A barrel clamp was bolted to the top of the 1500mm length of scaff. The poles were attached to the to the fly bar loosely. With one person on the end of the fly bar, the bar was flown out slowly and the tress were walked up to keep the parallel. In access equipment someone would go along the bar with someone at the base of the trees holding it straight and the person up the access equiptment to tighten the bolts in the barrel clamp. NOTE: both all the bolts had to be loosened at least a little bit in order to adjust the trees.

Read above details. PDF is not up to date.

Scene Breakdown

Checklists

Final version of show checklist used every day.

Loop plot used before every show.

Checklists for harnesses were obtained from the Petzl website. Petzl also has a document for both sport harnesses and professional harnesses that describe in depth how to inspect and recognize faults in their harnesses.

Completed checklists below for the Harnesses.

In this PDF you can see a change in the inspection where the straps of the getting creased from wear.

Flys

Lighting

Sound

Photos

Photos can be found here.