Tuesday 1 July 2014

Twelfth Night

Amongst the assignments I take on as a photographer, there is one type I much enjoy - theatre. However, most are in the predictable environment of one of several theatres I regularly go to shoot in but on Thursday last week, it was the turn of outdoor theatre. Great! A summer evening out in the beautiful grounds of the Odney Estate in Berkshire, to photograph an Edwardian take on the Shakespeare classic, Twelfth Night. What could be nicer?

Well, the weather for a start! As I drove around the M25, I watched whilst the sky became ever more depressing as I sat in an equally depressing 20 mph traffic jam. Sure enough, when I finally arrived on site, the rain was drizzling in that 'getting you wetter than you think' way.

As I set up on this final dress rehearsal night, it was imperative that kit was waterproofed, whilst a few hardy souls took to the seats to watch this final run-through, also duly waterproofed.

Main challenges for the night: keeping my roving camera dry by tucking the handle into my coat pocket of a beautifully distracting large brightly coloured, borrowed golfing brolly, leaving my hands free to do the business. And as with any theatre shoot, that is active, anticipating moves, avoiding shots directly into spotlights and, an issue with outdoor shoots, dealing with ever changing light levels.

The opening scene had Viola entering dripping wet, having been rescued from the shipwreck. (Not much help needed with that effect then, nor on successive performances by all accounts!)
So without Much Ado (oh, hang on, that is another play) I will just let you take in a few shots for the ambiance of the (very damp) evening.

And the curtain call...

Hats off to all involved for making it through, despite the awful wet conditions, and not least for not being distracted by a meandering photographer with a colourful big brolly!

Look forward to the next shoot...in the dry please guys?!!

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