Open Forum

Creating a "Black Box" classroom

  • 1.  Creating a "Black Box" classroom

    Posted 10 days ago
    Hello all!

    I am in a lovely situation where our school is building a new theatre and transforming our existing stage into a Black Box Drama Classroom.  So, I was given a catalog and asked what I need to furnish this space.  This room will be used to teach Intro and Advanced theatre and Stagecraft classes in addition to being a rehearsal space.  I'd also love to maintain the option of holding small performances in here.  I have a list in my mind of what I need/want, but I'd love to hear from the hive mind of what I mustn't forget, or what I don't need.

    Feel free to link me to vendors for any essentials.  I have no idea how much the district will spend, but I might as well ask for it all (and then prioritize).  ;)

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    Kristina Cummins
    Olympia WA
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  • 2.  RE: Creating a "Black Box" classroom

    Posted 9 days ago
    I would ask for a lighting grid, lights, and small control system to hang from the ceiling in addition to your standard classroom lights. I have been blessed to have this set up for my day to classroom for 19 years now. if it is also to be your set building space, ask for tables and chairs not desks. These can be moved and folded to set against the wall or in the hall during a performance, and the chairs can be arranged as you wish for your audience. Do you have tools? If not, ask for them all now.
    Hope you get a great space!

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    Tina Tutt
    Middle School Theatre Teacher
    Middle School Theatre Director
    Battle Ground Academy
    Franklin, TN
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  • 3.  RE: Creating a "Black Box" classroom

    Posted 8 days ago
    You would want to have a Theatrical company or consultant come out and look at the existing system in the space, it may be able to be reused in the space if is serviceable into the future, the same for fixtures, if they are building the theater the consultant on that project may be already designing this space as well, please ask your administration. Some additional things I would want would be a wrap a round curtain for the outside walls, additional leg curtain panels with pipe and suspension materials to be able to do masking, and some portable clip lights for backstage work lights

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    Jerry Onik
    V.P. Theatrical Supplies and Equipment
    Omaha NE
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  • 4.  RE: Creating a "Black Box" classroom

    Posted 6 days ago
    Thanks for your input.  We are taking our existing stage space (walling off the proscenium arch) and transforming it into a classroom.  Therefore, we already have the grid, lights, curtains, etc.  A theatrical company is helping with this part of the transformation.  This space is approximately 50' wide and 30' deep.

    My main question is more about the furniture that would make it work well also as a classroom.  I will be asking for black box movable seating (looking at Wenger and StageRight).  Also looking into flip tables and chairs.  Just wondering if there are other recommendations of what I can't live without.  I will also teach Stagecraft (making model sets, book work, etc.) in this space.

    I appreciate all of your collective wisdom!

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    Kristina Cummins
    Olympia WA
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