ETC Source Four LED Series 2 goes on a journey in Monkey Goes West

Date Posted: 4/14/2015

Monkey Goes West, W!LD RICE Ltd.

Singapore theater company W!ld Rice looks East for inspiration, and its latest production, Monkey Goes West - a pantomime take on the Chinese classic novel Journey to the West - was an impressive triumph, attracting more than 10,000 spectators in a holiday show. The enchanting lighting was the soul of this tongue-in-cheek musical, thanks to ETC Source Four® LED Series 2 luminaires and Source Four LED CYC adapters .

Monkey Goes West, W!LD RICE Ltd.

The story was placed in a modern-day Singapore context, written by W!ld Rice's resident playwright, Alfian Sa'at, and directed by Sebastian Tan. It depicted the adventure of an orphan, Ah Tang, who ran away from home and found himself in a mythical land where he met the monkey king and other imaginary creatures. Lighting designer Adrian Tan says that the team wanted to explore the idea of using light to enhance the storytelling of the show during the initial creative process. "Playing with shadows and light on backdrops, gauzes and cycloramas were very important design approaches," explains A. Tan.

Monkey Goes West, W!LD RICE Ltd.

He used eight Source Four LED Series 2 luminaires together with Source Four CYC adapters to illuminate the cyclorama. Five units were placed two meters away from the bottom of the cyclorama and three units overhead, which allowed him more space for set pieces upstage and to hang more lights on the limited lighting bars that he had. "I have never seen such power and versatility packed into one tiny fixture," says A. Tan. 

Lighting designers often light their cycloramas with L120 or L181 Dark Blue/Congo Blue, which can be washed out by front-of-house fixtures and moving lights. "In this case, it didn't happen," describes A. Tan. "I had the ETC Source Four LED Series 2 in a full indigo on the cyclorama, and I had my profiles and moving lights in white. The indigo still stood out and looked beautiful among the dry ice and white light on stage."

Monkey Goes West, W!LD RICE Ltd.

"I firmly believe that ETC has got it right and is ahead of everyone else in LED technology in terms of size, color, dimming and consistency. I would recommend it to anyone at any time," concludes A. Tan.

The production has been nominated for the Life! Theatre Awards, leading the pack with six nominations, including Production of the Year.

Photos courtesy of W!ld Rice Ltd.