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The Magic Cafe Forum Index » » Grand illusion » » Help with water cabinet. NB Not magic techniques! (0 Likes) Printer Friendly Version

griffindance
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Im helping out with an opera production and as part of the final scene the director wants a dancer in a glass cabinet that slowly fills with water.
The cabinet will be approx 2m high and should stand on a 1m high podium in the centre of the stage.
There is no understage area though the stage isn't raked, so everything could be set on casters.
For dramatic purposes the cabinet should fill slowly with water until half full (7mins) then completely fill over another 5mins.
As yet the director hasnt told me if the girl climbs into the cabinet onstage or is preset before the scene. Or even if the cabinet can be preset or must be moved into place during the production.
The girly (I assume a female dancer) should als be thrashing about as she "drowns" so maybe a tried and tested strong cabinet design could be suggested.

There is no magic trick involved so Im not asking for help with secrets. What I would appreciate is details and such. How to regulate the water flow. Which materials to build the cabinet from. How not to drown the dancer as she stays in the cabinet underwater until the end of the show...

I appreciate any help the MC members could give!
griffindance
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In addition...

As we're in Europe and it will probably be quite cold during the performances the dancer will probably appreciate water that isn't point above freezing.
So an additional question is "How to regulate the temperature of the water before filling and whilst in the cabinet?"
Frank Simpson
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You're going to want genuine professional advice to do this correctly. I would recommend contacting Willie Kennedy as a good resource. He built a Houdini water torture tank for a friend of mine a few years ago. Click Here to view. It has withstood the rigors of touring and never failed on stage. It is on an elevated platform on wheels, so it seems that he has already worked out most of what you're looking for.

You will also want to consult with your local unions (if any) because they would definitely have a say in using such a device in performance. They may even have a specified range of temperatures that the water must be, etc. This is not going to be an inexpensive effect.

And now I'm just terribly curious as to which opera this is...
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