When the UK’s first permanent lighting exhibition opens in April at the Gaiety Theatre on the Isle of Man, ETC’s Source Four will be officially recognised as one of the most groundbreaking luminaires of our time, standing alongside equipment from the early days of electrical theatre lighting. The project aims to allow the public to discover the behind-the-scenes elements of a working theatre, offering interactive tours with a well versed theatre guide explaining how each piece of equipment works.
Theatre Production Manager Seamus Shea said: “We aimed to get a lantern from each decade of the twentieth century. While there are lots of manufacturers of modern theatre lighting, there’s sadly been very little in the way of evolutionary changes. We asked ETC to donate the Source Four because it’s the one device that’s revolutionised the way theatres work”.
The Gaiety has recently undergone an historic 10-year restoration to return it to its former architectural glory. The lighting exhibits are housed in the Victorian theatre’s old projection rooms, which have been artfully converted for that purpose. The Source Four will play a lead role in the display. ETC’s UK Manager Mark White said: “It’s an honour for us to have a state-of-the-art Source Four standing alongside historic lanterns like the Pattern 23 and Pattern 123, both industry standards in their day. We are thrilled that ETC will go down in history as a firm which played an important part in the evolution of the theatre”.
The exhibition will run for its first full season from April to September. Opened for a brief stint last summer, the exhibition proved very popular. Seamus believes those interested in attending one of this year’s tours should book well in advance. “Last year we were turning people away at the doors. The demand to see the lanterns on display was enormous, but for safety reasons and to protect the exhibits we’re limited to letting no more than 50 people through the doors each session”, he explained.
For those who want to see the Source Four in action, the Gaiety Theatre is also a live venue and boasts a cutting-edge rig, including 18 ETC Source Fours supplied by ETC dealer Stage Electrics.
To book a place on one of the Gaiety Theatre’s Saturday morning tours or to find out more about the exhibition, telephone +44 (0)1624 620046.
For further information about ETC products, please visit www.etcconnect.com.