Magazine article Stage Directions

Dialogue

Magazine article Stage Directions

Dialogue

Article excerpt

Scrim Unskimmed

I love your magazine because it encompasses all there is in theater. Could you please do an in-depth article on scrim material onstage? Such as, should the rectangular areas be horizontal or vertical or does it depend on how it's lit? Is sharktooth scrim the best to work with? How close can the audience be? It's something I've been wanting to read for a long time. If you know of a book that has more than a page on scrim material, that would help me.

Greg Bostrom

Via e-mail

While it's possible to work with straight scrim fabric, we don't recommend it. You'll get far better results from a professionally-prepared drop. The top will be reinforced with heavy-duty, two-inch-wide upholstery webbing, with brass grommets set on one-foot centers for hanging-no guessing which side goes up. Side hems are usually an inch wide. The bottom hem is typically six inches deep, double stitched, lined in 8 oz. canvas duck and left open at each end to allow insertion of pipe or a chain weight. (Try doing all that on a standard sewing machine!) Professional scrims hang evenly, store better and last longer. They also give the best results when lit. If you do try to work with the unfinished cloth, the scrim weave can run either horizontal or vertical. However if you have more than one scrim, you should be consistent with the weave direction.

There are two types of scrim: bobbinet and sharkstooth. Bobbinet is typically more transparent than sharkstooth and is sometimes used to create the illusion of depth onstage by placing the scrim just downstage of a sky drop. …

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