Community production of Lion King with digital projection backdrops

What Excites You about Animated Projections? | Behind the Curtain Video

This week on Behind the Curtain, we talk to theatre director and teacher Robert Botello about animated projections and what excites him about the spectacle and possibilities of digital environments in shows.

Video Length: 1:41 (1 minute, 41 seconds)

QUESTION: “What Excites You about Animated Projections?”

ROBERT: “When Lion King first came out and they were using puppets and they were using people, just doing innovative, cool stuff. Cool stuff that no one is doing yet or has thought to do! And there something about that with the animation on the backgrounds. When a projection is animated and people aren’t expecting that necessarily. When we did Lion King and we had a few pieces where we had some fishing rods and birds and people coming in(to) the audience and we’re trying to create this feel and this magic.

And the audience is there and you have this background and you’ve got the sunrise to start with. You see the stage and how things are and the song, it grows—it sets the stage for the entire rest of the show. And then completely unexpected, and in some ways subtle at first, that sunrise starts happening. At the beginning it seems like something simple and yet it is so impactful because it’s moving and at some point your audience members are like ‘is that sunrise actually rising?!’ And then all of a sudden there are birds flying in the sky and then there’s the singing. It is such another piece that brings it to life! The audience is in the experience without stopping. They don’t have to do all this extra work to stay in the moment. It (the animated projection) is keeping them there.”

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If you’re interested in projections and would like to visit our collection of nearly 100 digital projections available for shows, click here.

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