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Anything Goes

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Designed by Christopher Beeching

The designer’s inspiration for this set of Anything Goes, stems from the Hollywood Movies of the 30's, in particular "The Big Broadcast of 1938” which took place on a liner and starred Bob Hope, certain interior details though being inspired by the 1932 film of "Grand Hotel” starring Greta Garbo.

A false proscenium is provided, flats being 18’high, the border being 5’ deep in the centre and 8’deep at the sides. Decorative items on the front border are solid and are finished in Brushed ‘Gold’ Metal Foil. All three pairs of wing flats are 3’6”wide at the base and 4’6”at the top. DS and US return flats 4’ wide, CS being 2’9”. The flatage height is 18’ [16’ with a 2’ top-up]. All are covered in a fabric that is capable of lighting “dead”, with an overlay design in timber. There are two borders, the flying height of the back-cloth making a third unnecessary. Borders are 42’ wide, the second one being a straight 8’deep.

It is a composite set, the basic framework consisting of two 8’ levels, surrounded by railings, either side of a 5' wide main staircase. These 8’ levels are strongly constructed, being able to accommodate up to 10 Tap Dancers each side. There are Get-Offs at each side.

This is all backed by flattage rising to 16’6” which gives the illusion of a third, albeit not practical level. In the centre, at the top of the 5’ staircase mentioned above, is a double door, the backing to which seems to lead to other areas of the ship. Behind this flattage is the backcloth [ dimensions of 38’x 17’6” aprox ] depicting a stylised sky, yet another level, and a funnel. The Cloth is “back-painted”, so that it is possible, by careful focusing, to backlight the windows in the top-most level. To get the full effect of the height of the ship, this backcloth should be flown 5’ – 6’ from stage level. Windows in the flattage are also translucent, and suitable for back-lighting.

In front of the 8' levels, there are trucks units resembling cabin exteriors with bench seats; these units are moved into the wings revealing the various cabin scenes, allowing the two 8'x6' cabin trucks to be brought down stage. For stability the exterior trucks should have stage weights placed inside the seating area, and if wing space is restricted, pins on the exterior trucks can be removed to facilitate angling as they go off-stage. The SR 8’x6’ trucks is re dressed for Evelyn’s Cabin in Act I scene 6, there is a “shaving mirror” provided, mounted onto the wall next to the window. Access for re-dressing the truck is from the back of the set, the back wall of the truck being unpinned.

For Act II scenes 2 and 4, the Brig scenes, the SL truck is re built in the interval. The Brig is surrounded by cut down bars to allow an uninterrupted view of the action. There are metal bars in the door, to allow for the stage direction, “Woon bangs his cup along the bars", The bunk beds from Moon’s Cabin are also used for the Brig, being reversed to show the “beaten-up” side.

The way into the Ship’s Nightclub is through a flown, built archway, of Art Deco design, 16’3” high x 20’ wide. This is flown centrally around the main staircase. Detailing on this archway is in Brushed ‘Gold’ Metal Foil. Should it not be possible to use the built archway because of technical restrictions, there is a “soft” version mounted onto Opera Net available. There is also a 6’ x 3’ bar truck for this scene, the Bar top being also finished in Brushed ‘Gold’ Metal Foil.

The Act I scene 2, “Bon Voyage” sequence has a ship’s railing formed from four units. Two trucks with central raked areas, and two railings attached to the central railing trucks at the on-stage end, and supported by small out-riggers at the offstage. Lengths of bunting lend a festive atmosphere to this scene. The bunting is provided by Prosceneium.

For Act I scene 1, the “Smokey Manhattan Bar” in the Beaumont Theatre Version of the script there is a separate 6’x 3’ Manhattan Bar truck, with an attached backing having a maximum height of 9’. The Top of the Bar is finished in Brushed Aluminium Foil. There is also a flown bar sign, dimensions being 11’6” wide x 7’ high and approximately 6” thick. This scene should be played in front of a black gauze with “city light” gobos forming a back-drop – see photo of the model. The ones used in this photo are Rosco Gobos - Nightlights 3 (no. 778224), Neon 1 (no.77509A), and part of Neon 2 (no. 77509B). The black gauze can be provided. This scene bleeds through to the ship’s Bon Voyage sequence.

All photographs in the Brochure are of the set model, digitally enhanced with “stage lighting”. Colours are as accurate as possible, given the restrictions of printing.

Should you have any queries about the set, please do not hesitate to contact Prosceneium.


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