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Building Stage Theaters – How Much Work is Involved?

The first is the stage designer's creative vision and the second is budget. However you must not assume that just because a play has a huge budget it is going to have a huge and complex stage and set design. The company, set designer and / or director may be taking a minimalist approach and have just a bucket on stage, for instance.

It is also going to depend on what type of set up the theater already has. Stage design goes beyond mere set design and may need to incorporate such things as seating arrangements and rostra for a stage area. In some cases, it can also include lighting design.

There are three different types of stage layout common in the west and these are 'in the round', the proscenium and the thrust. 'In the round' is when the audience is sat around the staging area so that actors are surrounded completely; the proscenium, the most common stage type, is when the audience faces the stage on one side only. The thrust is when the acting area is surrounded on three sides, commonly this extends from a proscenium stage and is often used in music concerts and is an area where guitarist can 'rock out'.

Another factor is whether the show is touring, and moving from venue to venue, or staying in one place. If the show is touring then it is reasonably to mean that the set building and stage design is kept simple and light in order to facilitate rapid 'get ins' and 'get outs'. On the other hand a large stationaryary theatrical piece can have a huge lavish set. Sometimes touring sets require a lot more energy over all as they are put up and taken down at each venue. Conversely, a stationaryary theatrical event only needs to have the stage set up once and then taken down at the end of the run.

Again the type of stage theater supplies that you will need will vary from show to show. Stage theater supplies can range from scaffolding, to hold up backdrops (common in touring productions), rostra (for creating stage areas), lights (if not available) and so on. Indeed stage theater supplies can include anything from these major requirements right the way down to the trusty old roll of multi-purpose Gaffer tape, ideal for holding sets together, stick down leads for health and safety purposes, to even holding costumes on in extreme circumstances .

As you can see the amount of work required and specific stage theater supplies varies so much from production to production that it is almost impossible to quantify. Largely it is dependent on the artistic vision of those contributing. A rather large and spectacular stage and set design can be created on a shoestring budget, whereas a production with a very minimalistic set can have a vast budget. As such the amount of work required, or not, is considerably down to careful design and planning of those involved.

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