Behind the scenes at 40-45 The Movie
Wednesday, 20 March 2019
40-45-behind-the-scenes-the-movie-37The movie gives viewers a technical and creative insight into the production of the show set during World War II
Belgium - Fisheye, Painting with Light, PRG Belgium and WIcreations - four of the technical partners involved in the 40-45 Spektakel Musical production - have been featured in a behind-the-scenes film.
40-45 Spektakel Musical is being staged at the Pop-Up Theatre in Puurs by Studio 100.
The short film, available for free on YouTube, was shot during the set up and first weeks of the production and features clips from the show as well as exclusive interviews with director Frank van Laecke, technical director Bart Caels from B-Art Production Design, creative lighting expert and video designer Luc Peumans, innovative entertainment engineering specialist Hans Willems, Fisheye director Stijn Slabbinck - in charge of several scenic masterpieces - and Tom van Hemelryck from PRG, who provided lighting and rigging equipment.
It gives viewers a technical and creative insight into the meticulous planning and challenges of producing this ambitious show set during World War II, the vision and foresight of Studio 100 and the strong teamwork, standards of excellence and innovative solutions that are making it happen.
A team from Painting with Light led by Luc Peumans crafted the lighting design and undertook the programming and operating. They also produced the bespoke video content and designed the video control system complete with its programming and operating.
Painting with Light also supplied 10 new disguise gx media servers for the playback video content which is appearing on eight moving LED video walls. Their segment of the movie looks closely at how video and lighting cues have been integrated via the grandMA2 control platform.
It examines the lighting process from conception to completion, explains the advantages of vital tools like visualisation and how it was used, plus special custom elements like the control of the video content’s virtual lighting which is appearing on the screens and has been compiled to match to the ‘actual’ lighting cues happening simultaneously on the set.
Entertainment engineering specialist WIcreations designed, developed and installed a bespoke wireless laser-guided system to move eight enormous seating tribunes each holding over 200 audience members who are watching the show each day.
The tribunes themselves were also constructed by WIcreations in the theatre and each one contains around 14,000 parts, the majority of which have been custom machined. The tribunes move together or individually throughout the venue for the full two-hour show - in every direction and on every axis - sometimes with as little as 20cm between them.
Set design and build wizards Fisheye worked closely with set designer Stefaan Haudenhuyse and created some key props and scenic elements which are prominent in the show. The movie delves into the complex construction techniques - from design to CNC machining, the diligent research and the fine-tuned skills involved, all completed in-house at Fisheye’s workshops.
They include a 1:1 scale World War 2 Stuka bomber with turning propellers that ‘flies’ above through the performance space above the audience, and several automobiles including an Opel Blitz truck - with the petrol engine removed and replaced by an electric motor so it drives through the theatre. There is also a 30m -long train and a crashed Spitfire aircraft which burns realistically on the stage.
The train was built from scratch and the tricky part was to find a solution with a short turning distance so it could make a loop around and in and out the building.
All these items required painstaking and careful construction to bring them to life on the stage.
PRG has supplied and installed the lighting to Luc’s spec plus rigging and the 8 x 32sq.m LED screens which are secured on the moving wagons.
The movie shows the rigorous lighting and rigging prep for this very special event and highlights the detail of the installation itself. It also features a brand-new LED moving light - the Icon Stage - manufactured by PRG which made its live performance debut on 40-45.
(Jim Evans)

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