Directing a play that includes stage flying is something that almost every director will do at least once, given the prevalence of stage flight in classics like Peter Pan. For directors who have not used stage flying before, however, the process can seem a lot easier than it is.
While stage flying is not new, and stage flight companies know what safety precautions to take, it's all too possible for a new director to forget a few things in the stress and rush of putting together the play. If you're about to direct your first play that uses stage flying, avoid needless complications by remembering a few things.
Start planning the stage flight early, and get the stage flight company involved as soon as you can in set design, layout, blocking, and more. Yes, you're the director, but the stage flight company staff knows what it needs to safely get your cast literally off the ground. That's going to affect how you set up the backdrops, lights, and everything else that could potentially get in the way. Plus, if you've never directed stage flying before, you may not realize exactly what the process requires. The last thing you need is to have to do a last-minute revamp of everything because you blocked everything out and called the stage flight company in at the last second.
Be Willing to Modify Set Layout
Be willing to change your desired stage layout. The playwright will have left instructions, of course, but the shape of the theater and stage can change from place to place, and that can affect where everything goes. If you're willing to make modifications, planning the flying will go much more smoothly.
Train Your Cast
Stage flight isn't as easy for the actors as you think. Those who find it simple to work with have lots of experience; newcomers to stage flight can have issues with harness fit, changed perspective as they're moved about the stage and into the air under someone else's control, and still looking natural when they're actually dangling in the air by wires. They need training, and you need to schedule times when they can get used to the harnesses and how to speak and move while up in the air.
When you know what play you're directing and what flying effects you need, contact stage flight companies immediately to find out prices and scheduling. The sooner you start, the sooner you can address any issues that crop up.Share
4 September 2020
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