Much of my past few weeks in Stratford have been spent getting familiar with the ins and outs of the Studio Theatre, the Festival’s smallest permanent venue. At only 260 seats, getting a ticket to see a performance at the Studio can be harder than getting a sandwich at York Street Kitchen on a show day. It is however, a place where the audience can connect with the performers and where the performers can truly thrive off the energy of the audience.
The major change in my daily life since the move from the Festival to the Studio Theatre has been my interaction with the lighting console. While the Festival (and the Tom Patterson) uses Prego, the Studio (and the Avon) use Eos. While I do have experience with ETC consoles, I have not been hands on with one in several years, and I have never used one with moving light controls. Some things are very similar and some things are very different. While I like the power and capability of the Eos system, I prefer the layout and ease of use of Prego. Particularly with Prego being a point-and-click based system, if you can see data, you can edit it. Eos is a command line system that requires a secondary keyboard with mapped keys to allow for simple data search and entry commands.
All in all, both powerful systems that are more than capable of handling what we need. Vari-lites, scrollers, LED fixtures, no problem for either. I’m still learning both but am happy working with either.