“John’s workshop was the reverse of peeling away at onion layers, he literally built the “layers” of a theatre in front of our eyes and then using totally interactive techniques showed us the “hows and whys” of lighting. This was learning that was digestible, kinesthetic, revelatory and fun!” Thank you again for a fantastic day today. I felt it was pitched really well for our students.  I will certainly recommend you on to colleagues.”  Review from Ms Nancy McClean, Head of Drama, The Royal Grammar School, Guildford.

I am on tour  throughout the year.   To book use the contact page.  or call 07966 491 543

These workshops are relevant for drama studies (GCSE and A-level Theatre Studies, BTEC Performing Arts and Multimedia courses )

Are you the lone drama teacher who has to teach and direct the productions but also has to know all about the sets, costume, lights etc? These hands on lighting workshops will teach you and your pupils in a fun and easy way about all the aspects of the theatre, especially the lighting and sets in your pwn performing space.

Nominated for the Education Resources Awards “Innovative Workshop of the Year” in 2003.

Don’t just take our word for it, here are just a few things people have said about us:

“Awesome! This lighting workshop certainly had the wow factor. The best student based workshop I have ever had, even I learnt something”

– Carol Evans, Alder School Tameside, July 2008

“In my 23 years of teaching drama I’ve yet to find a more interesting and creative way of introducing GCSE pupils to stage lighting.    Head of Drama, St Michael’s School, Lancashire

“It was fascinating to watch the building of the theatre. Initially the students were apprehensive about volunteering to be involved but by the end of the workshop, all hands were up. The workshop was motivating for both students and staff alike. All of us came away saying “Ooh can we get a mini parcan” and “lets do something with gauze” and “lets create those
effects in our next production. Inspiring and motivating! Thank you “

– Ruth Gasser, King Arthur’s Community School, Wincanton

For more reviews, please go to the Reviews page.

The workshop is also very well received in special needs schools.

Workshop Description 

With the aid of a model theatre (2m tall by 2.5m deep by 2.5m wide) which is constructed by the students in the first 25 minutes, they can learn about the many varied technical facilities that make up a working stage.illustration kids around theatre

It has several “flown” sets, gauzes, backdrops, cyclorama and other scenery and lighting bars. In front of the model theatre a lighting bar is set up on stands. Students then using real stage lights to light the scene, explore the use of digital dimmers, patching, manual and memory control desks, floodlights, fresnels, profile spotlights, parcans, birdies, scrollers, etc.

The workshops will demonstrate lighting for proscenium arch, thrust stages and theatre in the round stage productions.

How does a gauze curtain work? I will show you live! Macbeth witches appear through a dark forest gauze and then the cauldron starts to steam!

How to choose, which light to use where. How to bring out the emotional and visual content of the play, using colour, lighting angles, and cross fades.

Some of the features of the workshop include:

  • A complementary hand book for teachers (can be photocopied).
  • The workshop will be related to your school performing space and system. I can also relate it to an upcoming performance.
  • Students will work as a team and carry out quick scene changes in seconds and in a blackout which will briefly introduce the discipline of stage management.
  • With a model theatre it is possible to show far more real stage settings in the allotted time than a full sized theatre system.
  • Focusing techniques, the use of shutters and barn doors, irises and gauze effects, the use of gobos to create cityscapes, trees, church windows etc. (they really can transform your performing space) are all covered by the workshop.
  • Towards the end of the workshop, the visual interest increases yet more with the introduction of simple yet effective fire and water projections as well as some  famous West End sets.
  • The workshop is backed up with a slideshow of productions I have lit in this country and abroad and many of the animated diagrams form the basis for the teachers’ hand book. The students will be able to tell me how we have lit a scene, with which type of light and with what type of accessories.

The 1st workshop of the day will last 3 hours, the 2nd on the same day will last 2 hours. Half day or day workshops can also be arranged. Other members of staff are welcomed to join in the fun. Production advice and guided help with designing, rigging plotting and operating can be provided for the students, and many schools have found this extremely useful.

Inset days can also be arranged, in fact, many schools book a student workshop followed by an inset training day.

I am on tour 3-4 days a week throughout the year. To book please go to the Contact Us page.

John is a member of the Association of Lighting Designers.
Call to book a workshop now.  07966 491 543 or use the contact page