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Chesapeake Hosts Rigging Workshop

The Chesapeake Regional Section held an aerial rigging symposium May 6 at the Atlas Performing Arts Center in Washington, DC. The sessions proved to be very exciting, educational, and eventful for theatre technicians as well as performing aerialists. The group of 30 participants enjoyed hands-on experience of rigging for both traditional theatre fly houses and arena and circus type rigging. With an emphasis on "safety first," the sessions were headed by Delbert Hall and assisted by Jonathan Deull.

Bill Luciano (carpenter and rigger for Borgata Casino in Atlantic City) was harnessed up for a chance to work the other end of the fly line for a change. Above, Mr. Luciano gives his version of a Peter Pan performance to the other participants at the symposium.

Professional aerialists Sara Deull, right, and Ann Behrends, left, learned how to rig their own systems and help show impacts of live loads on the rigs they use.

Photos were provided by Air Dance Bernasconi. Many more pictures of the event can be seen at

Just a reminder to those who wish to participate in Design Expo 2007 at Shenandoah University on September 15: remember to submit an entry form to Andrew Rich.

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Upstate Focuses on Lighting

The Upstate New York Regional Section held its first expo May 5 at SUNY-Potsdam and St. Lawrence University (SLU). The campus theatres of both schools were converted into moving light laboratories.

Representatives from ETC, Strand, and Entertainment Technology set up hands-on demonstrations highlighting the latest in computer control light boards and intelligent lighting systems. Members from area schools and professional venues were given one-on-one demonstrations of the systems in real world settings -- actual working theatres in actual working light plots.

Participants were sent either to SUNY-Potsdam or SLU for a morning session with one type of equipment. After lunch the groups switched venues and had a different experience. Many of the participants appreciated the comparison and the way the set-up allowed them to manipulate the equipment themselves.

The use of two working theatres was also a big plus. SUNY-Potsdam had a live dance plot in use. St. Lawrence had a standard rep plot up. Both were used to show how the control equipment interfaced with the intelligent lights as well as the stationary instruments. The Upstate New York section hopes to make these types of demonstrations a regular part of its program.

Photos/Jeff Reeder, Technical Director, SUNY Potsdam

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Ohio Valley Touts Success

May 12 promised 75 degrees and sunshine in the Columbus, Ohio area, not exactly a day for hiding away in front of a computer. However, 14 dedicated theatre designers and technologists paid big bucks to improve their skills in VectorWorks 3-D as part of USITT-Ohio Valley's spring professional development workshop. New York-based designer Chris Dopher led participants through the basics of VectorWorks 3-D and along the way demonstrated several shortcuts and slick tricks for working with this very powerful CAD program.

Special thanks to the staff at Otterbein College, Chris Perrota, and Deter Willis for providing the facility for training. This was very important in making the PDW affordable to member participants.

For Ohio Valley this was a financial risk because the training company required a sizable deposit. Fortunately, all seats were sold two weeks before the workshop. Given this success, the section is looking at other training seminars members might want in the future.

At the training session are: front, Jeremy Benjamin, Tammy Honesty,Tom Umfrid, Mary Tarantino; back, Kathe Devault, Richard Keith, Michael Lincoln, John Woodey, Sarah Riffle, Elliot France, Marcdus Wuebker, Deter Willis; not shown, Eddie Jackson, Matt Benjamin, and Chris Dopher, Master Teacher.

Photo/Jim Hill

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