Magazine article American Theatre

The Elaborate Entrance of Chad Deity

Magazine article American Theatre

The Elaborate Entrance of Chad Deity

Article excerpt

Edward Torres, DIRECTION: My wonderful collaborators, Brian and Jesse--who always do stellar work!--helped me envision Chad Deity by focusing their designs on telling the story of the play. I'm actually a fan of wrestling, so I understand the media aspects of it; and I also have a film degree, so this production was a kind of melding of those two worlds. We wanted to create not just a play but a theatre event--the kind of theatricalized spectacle staged by WWE (World Wrestling Entertainment], So we scrapped every theatrical convention we knew and went for big effects, loud music, explosions and so on, with the goal of drawing the audience into that world. The "elaborate entrances" of the wrestlers were shot on video in different environments (for the Geffen production, the locales were all around L.A.), then when the wrestler appears live, it's as though he were emerging from the video into the theatre.

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Brian Sidney Bembridge, SCEHIC DESIGN: The same basic design team has been working on this show since its inception at Victory Gardens Theater in Chicago three years ago--the move to Second Stage Theatre in New York and the transfer to the Geffen have meant making some minor changes, mainly to accommodate the size of the houses. My job has been framing the show in a crazy, pop-culture, cartoonish sort of way, creating the background for the performers and for Jesse King's lighting. As you can see in the photo, he's placed lights inside the truss, making it glow and vibrate with all kinds of beautiful effects. …

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