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WPI Technical Theatre Handbook: Introduction
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Lighting provides a tool for setting moods and tones of scenes on stage. In order to effectively utilize this tool, one must have a fairly in-depth understanding of the physics of light as well as the mechanical and electrical considerations of the lighting equipment.

This chapter is an attempt to cover most aspects of a typical theatre lighting setup, including exposure to a wide variety of lighting instruments, dimmers, lighting boards, and other associated hardware. Additionally, basic lighting theory will be discussed, including important techniques necessary for successful lighting design.

Having knowledge of how to use the equipmenta allows one to act as the Master Electrician for a production. The responsibilities of the Master Electrician (M.E.) are to hang, patch and focus the lights as per the lighting plot provided by the lighting designer. Often times the M.E. will also operate the lighting console for the production.

While a knowledge of basic lighting theory is helpful to anyone working in the theatre, it is especially important to the Lighting Designer. The Lighting Designer (L.D.) must have a firm grasp on the theories of light, optics, and color, as well as a fair degree of artistic vision. The lighting designer has to use lighting to reinforce the moods of the play, as established by the work being performed as well as the production staff. In keeping with the the theme of this book, the artistic aspects of lighting design will not be stressed, as they are extremely difficult, if not impossible, to convey in written form. The easiest way to get a feel for what works and what doesn't is to work with an experienced L.D. on a few performances.

next up previous contents index
Next: Lighting Instruments Up: Lighting Previous: Lighting   Contents   Index
Steve Richardson 2000-07-06

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