Tim Rodrigues plays with light and shadow for Geordie Productions’ Halloween performance

Halloween is a holiday tradition which involves both tricks and treats, spooky and sweet, celebrations and superstitions. Some choose to spend October 31st chasing thrills and scares, some choose to focus solely on the candy, but no matter which part of Halloween is your favourite, there is no denying its balance of lightness and darkness. It’s precisely this concept that Tim Rodrigues incorporated into the lighting design for Amanda Kellock’s stage adaptation of the Ray Bradbury novel, The Halloween Tree.

Halloween is known to many people as a children’s holiday. The Halloween Tree begins with five best friends meeting up to participate in one of Halloween’s best traditions: trick or treating. Upon arrival, they find out one of their best friends, Pipkin, is too sick to join them, but has asked them to meet up at a spooky mansion in town. This leads to them embarking on a wild Halloween journey through space and time to try and save their friend.

The set for The Halloween was designed specifically to incorporate surreal lighting effects. “The kids are continuously changing not only their locations, but also the time periods they are in,” explained Tim. “For the lighting, I really tried to help emphasize the transitions from each place and provide a setting that would be evocative of where they’re at on their journey.”

There are some incredible “tricks of the light” which take place throughout the show. “At one point during the show, as the kids are being transported to a different time period, they are all of a sudden under attack by Roman soldiers,” said Tim. “And the Roman soldiers are actually shadows, so the kids have an entire battle with the shadow soldiers.”

Another time, one of the characters, Fred, gets separated from the others. “They are reunited in a caveman setting during the human discovery of light and fire. As Fred tells his story, the audience is taken through the shadow of the fire on his torch and the shadows on the wall re-enact the adventures he had while by himself,” said Tim.

The Halloween Tree explores life and death, and the concept of not being able to appreciate the light without darkness. “The shadows truly play a character in the play,” said Tim. “It’s an emotional journey that brings life to death.”

Geordie Productions aims to entertain, provoke thought, fire up the imagination and challenge audiences of all ages. The Halloween Tree is the perfect blend of creepy and celebratory that defines the Halloween season, and is perfect for the whole family. Written by Ray Bradbury, adapted for the stage and directed by Amanda Kellock, The Halloween Tree runs from October 21 to October 30, 2016 at D.B. Clarke Theatre. Click here for more information.

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