Lifestyle The Arts One Ring to Rule Them All
One Ring to Rule Them All
Written by Mr Peter McClelland


LOTR-orchestraWe’ll have 80 adult and 40 child singers on-stage plus the full WASO orchestra.Epic events such as The Lord of the Rings (LOTR) at the Riverside Theatre on June 21 accompanied by a full orchestra don’t just happen with a flick of the fingers...

David Cotgreave, WASO’s Production and Technical Manager, is the miracle worker pulling the strings on this one. And yes, there will be a doctor in the house – five of them, in fact! Dr Olga Ward and four colleagues (see Medical Forum March 2013) will be singing their hearts out in the chorus.

“This show is a huge undertaking and the first problem was finding a venue that was large enough. It’s all based around the size of the screen – 6m x 14.5m in this case! We’ve shoe-horned it into the Riverside Theatre at the Perth Convention Centre and we’ll have 80 adults and 40 children singing on-stage plus the full WASO orchestra in front of them,” David said.

The technical logistics for LOTR are mind-boggling and some of the equipment had to be brought in from interstate. Nonetheless, David’s CV is impressive having been at the helm as Production Manager at four of the largest Arts companies in Australia.

David-CotgreaveDavid Cotgreave“We used a sophisticated computerised design program to draw up the specifications for the show. There are two huge projectors, highly specialised play-back equipment and the sound system uses the same rigging points from the CHOGM Opening Ceremony. And a lot of the audio-visual gear came across from Melbourne.”

“I’m a WAAPA graduate and I’ve been very fortunate with my career. It all started with the Perth Festival and then I threw my CV in for the Sydney 2000 Olympic Games [David also worked on last year’s London Olympics]. After that I worked with the Sydney Theatre Company, back to WAAPA and now the WASO. There’s always something exciting happening!”

LOTR is excitement on a grand scale, from the emotion of Tolkein’s narrative to the full-octane power of an orchestra with massed voices.

“You can’t help but focus on the music, although the subtitles will be up on the screen so you won’t miss a word of the dialogue. I saw the show in Melbourne – it’s awesome!”

** For you chance to see the show on June 21, go to the competitions page for details.