White Light over the rainbow

Wednesday, 9 February 2011
White Light over the rainbowThe Wizard of Oz opens at the London Palladium in March
UK - White Light has been selected as the lighting supplier for Andrew Lloyd Webber's new production of the classic musical The Wizard of Oz. With Daniel Hope, chosen by the public through the BBC's Over the Rainbow, taking the lead role, the show will open at the London Palladium in March.

Directed by Jeremy Sams, choreographed by Arlene Phillips and designed by Robert Jones, the creative team behind Lloyd Webber's earlier revival of The Sound of Music in the same theatre, the production will feature the classic Harold Arlen-E Y Harburg songs from the MGM film alongside new songs by Andrew Lloyd Webber and his original writing partner, lyricist Tim Rice.

The lighting for the show is being designed by Hugh Vanstone, the Olivier Award winner for best lighting in 1999, 2001 and 2004, Tony Award nominated in 2005 and 2009, and whose lighting for Shrek will be seen in London later this year also using a rig from White Light.

Vanstone will make use of much of the wide range of lighting equipment offered by White Light. His rig includes a selection of moving lights from Vari-Lite (VL500Bs, VL3000Qs), Martin (TW1s, Mac700s, MacIIIs), Clay Paky (Alpha Wash) and Coemar (the ACL-M beamlight, plus LED fixtures from i-Pix (the BB4) and Thomas (the PixelLine 1044). The rest of the rig includes ETC Source Four profiles and Pars, L&E battens, Wybron scrollers, High End Dataflash, Martin Atomics, and UV Fresnels from Altman.

Smoke effects will be created using Look Solutions Viper and Viper/Le Maitre Freeze Fog Pro combinations plus MDG Atmosphere haze machines, with the whole rig controlled by a grandMA full size and a grandMA Light console.

The team working alongside the lighting designer includes production electrician Fraser Hall, programmer Stuart Porter, and production manager Matt Towell.

White Light have also been helping the show's video designer Jon Driscoll, who needed a compact, bright, low-temperature light source for the substage 'video booth' in which Michael Crawford performs parts of his role of the Wizard. White Light suggested and then supplied Rosco's LightPad LED unit, which with its thin (less than 1cm) profile and low heat output turned out to be the perfect solution to the problem.

Produced by Andrew Lloyd Webber and Bill Kenwright, The Wizard of Oz opens at the London Palladium next month.

(Jim Evans)

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