The six-time Tony Award winning musical, Dear Evan Hansen, shares a story about a boy who yearns to be liked by his peers and socially accepted which unintentionally leads Evan Hansen to be the face of a viral social media frenzy about loneliness and friendship.
After opening on Broadway in 2016, this instant musical classic has transferred to the West End’s Noel Coward Theatre in London. The team who led the transition for this extraordinary musical was Michael Greif (Director), Patrick Moloney (Production Manager), David Korins (Designer), and Peter Nigrini (Projection Designer). Having partnered with Moloney on past productions, TAIT was contracted to deliver staging and automation solutions for Dear Evan Hansen’s West End production.
“There are only eight people in the cast, but the show isn’t about those eight characters – rather it’s about a whole community that forms on social networks around them. Originally, there was an entire chorus, eight or ten other performers, that provided that background, but during those workshops we started to figure out how much of that role projection could play – and saw enough to make the decision that the show was best told not with a traditional chorus to represent those voices but instead with projection. And I have to say the writers were absolutely brilliant about grasping this idea, about working with what was being added visually and how it allowed them to streamline the text so that the narrative sits on the shoulders of both forms of communication.” – Peter Nigrini, Projection Designer said in LSi Online’s February Issue
To create an immersive set that highlights the social media significance of this musical, Korins and Nigrini projected live social media streams onto moving LCD video screens and scenic elements. The automated video screens and scenic elements track right + left via 9 BT2-200 winches, 1 BT2-290, 1 Big Tow Winch and other various motors. The set is also equipped with several automated stage elements such as 4 stage lifts, stage traverses and a revolving scenic truck that travels a curved track built directly into the stage.
TAIT’s entertainment automation platform controls the set’s 38 axes of motion.