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We are a group of friends/parents that run a not-for-profit cultural association in Spain.
This is our (bilingual!) blog about our theatre workshops for kids...

martes, 2 de octubre de 2012

The universe, black light... and hula hoops

This years' play was set in space. Like last year, we decided to play around with black light to see if we could give some of the scenes a more "galactic" feel. Last year, we experimented a lot with using white under black light (the play was about ghosts , after all!) and this year's the theme - the universe, the stars and planets, astronauts - seemed to lend itself equally well to black light.... but it was all just as white! We were desperate to get our hands on a bit of colour, and see how that worked under the lights. So, we found a funky way to sneak a bit in (and pay homage to the iconic TV series, Star Trek, in the process):

For the psychedelic saturns, we covered hula hoops in pieces of material cut from reflective waistcoats (which react really well under black light) and we stuck circles on the kids' tummies in a contrasting colour as the planet.

When working with black light, the focus is usually on perfecting the illusion. It's all about hiding the mechanisms because the magic is usually in not knowing how the visual effects we are seeing were achieved. However, we felt this scene was actually enriched by the (inevitable) "imperfections". When a child drops their hula hoop - lets us in on the secret as it were - the magic is strangely heightened for the viewer (in my opinion). Which is why we decided not to hide the kids as they come off stage and to turn the lights up just a fraction "too soon" in order to break the spell a little... Does it work? What do you think? 

Watch the whole show here.

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