In 2015, White Light reaffirmed its position as the leading lighting supplier to West End and UK touring theatre by working on a vast array of theatre productions. The complete production solution specialist is continuing to support shows throughout the festive season by providing the lighting equipment on more than 40 pantomimes all across the UK.
Since its formation 44 years ago, WL has built a strong reputation of supporting pantomimes, with this year being no exception. One of the most popular Christmas shows is the classic story of Snow White, which is currently playing at the Bournemouth Pavilion Theatre. Nev Milsom is the lighting designer on the production. He comments, “Snow White is such a lively, busy show so it was important that the lighting rig not only worked with the cast and scenery but also produced vivid colour and texture throughout. Pantomimes generally allow you to be much bolder in terms of lighting so I always enjoy this time of year.”
To achieve the feel he wanted, Nev used Vari-Lite VLX Washes, Martin MAC TW1s, MAC 700 Profiles, ETC Source Four Profiles and Look Solutions Unique Haze Machines. He comments, “This is my 16th year of lighting pantomimes, with this being my fifth Snow White. Every time I work on a show I try to do something different, which was the case here.”
Another popular show this year is Cinderella and WL is supplying productions at Croydon’s Fairfield Halls, Richmond Theatre, Rhyl Pavilion and Tunbridge Wells’ Assembly Halls Theatre. The show at Tunbridge Wells is being lit by Morgan Jones, who has worked on several Cinderellas. He comments: “It was vital for me to create the magical atmosphere that is expected from a Cinderella pantomime. The main aim was to help create an enchanting show that the audience wouldn’t forget.”
To compliment the in-house rig at the Assembly Halls Theatre, Morgan drew on eight Martin MAC Vipers, nine Phillips SL Pars and a Jem Glaciator X-Stream. He comments, “Being able to work with WL and create my ideal rig was a great experience. I was extremely happy with the equipment they supplied and it contributed towards a really special show.”
No pantomime season is complete without Dick Whittington. WL is currently supplying three productions, one of which is at Aylesbury Waterside Theatre and stars X-Factor winner Sam Bailey. The show is being lit by Dee Ashworth, who first worked on Dick Whittington almost two decades ago. He comments, “This was the first show I have lit at Aylesbury and, with it being a pantomime, it was obviously a very large production. However, both the theatre and WL’s support has made the entire process very comfortable.”
From WL’s extensive lighting range, Dee utilised the JB Lighting LED A7 Washes and Martin MAC Auras.
As the festive season is now well underway, WL’s lighting equipment is being utilised in all corners of the UK. Andy Cullen, WL’s senior hires co-ordinator, comments, “Although we are working on such a huge range of shows, due to our extensive equipment and resources, we are able to offer each one the support it requires. Pantomimes are often the biggest shows of the year for many theatres so it’s important we do what we can to help each one achieve its potential.”