British Turntable has helped a North West theatre company add an extra dimension to their productions by designing, building and installing a 6 metre diameter revolving stage at the Theatre Royal in Ramsbottom. The stage, which was supplied with a timber deck and AC drive, was built to a standard design to meet the theatre’s needs in as cost-effective way as possible. The installation coincides with the design and installation of telescopic stage extensions for Bury Grammar School, demonstrating the company’s ability to provide practical solutions in areas as diverse as educational establishments, commercial and amateur theatres and the events, TV and film industries.
The Theatre Royal, home to Summerseat Players, has an excellent reputation for the quality of its productions. This year’s production of Witness for the Prosecution, a courtroom drama that requires scenes to move between the courtroom itself and the barrister’s rooms in the court-house, benefited greatly from the installation of the revolving stage. With each scene set either side of a dividing ‘wall’, the revolve allowed for a quick, smooth and quiet scene change, helping to preserve the taut atmosphere generated in the courtroom, holding the audience’s attention and building up tension in preparation for a nail-biting dénouement.
The cast, director, backstage and technical crew were impressed with the impact it added to the production and not least with the simplicity of the stage’s operation.
Revolving stages are not new to the theatre circuit. Many major theatre venues use a revolve to create spectacular effects, both for dramatic or musical productions; even smaller clubs and bars, such as Funny Girls in Blackpool, have called upon British Turntable’s expertise to install a unit that will give them greater flexibility and add panache to their shows. As they are built to be stable and robust, they form part of a static stage when not in use and, additionally, can be enhanced with a static or rise and fall centre, timed or positional indexing and remote control if required.
In addition to designing and building to specification, British Turntable offers a standard range of revolving stages, up to 12 metres in diameter, which are available on short term hire from depots around the world. These are used extensively to display products or special promotions in the exhibitions, conferences and venues industries, and to create special effects in TV commercials, dramas and commercial films.