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Hawthorn Support ‘Killer Joe’ at Trafalgar Studios

Hawthorn Support ‘Killer Joe’ at Trafalgar Studios
Hawthorn Support ‘Killer Joe’ at Trafalgar Studios

UK – Currently playing to packed out audiences at Trafalgar Studios in London’s famous West End, Tracy Letts’ black comedy Killer Joe is the queasily gripping play that’s got everyone talking. Full service technical production company Hawthorn is supplying lighting equipment to the production which sees Orlando Bloom take to the West End stage for the first time in more than a decade.

Killer Joe follows The Smith family who plot to murder a wealthy matriarch and claim her insurance money. They hire Joe Cooper (played by Orlando Bloom), a detective who doubles up as a part-time hit man, to go through with the job, but the plan takes a turn when Killer Joe meets the family’s innocent daughter.

Hawthorn has worked closely with the show’s award-winning lighting designer Richard Howell to supplying lighting equipment to his specification.

“All of the action plays out in the interior of a static-caravan with Grace Smart’s brilliant design showing us the bare bones of the room, floating in an abstract blue environment,” says Howell. “The lighting challenge was to define the playing space against its surrounding; creating a slice of naturalism where the action takes place. We also wanted the lighting to evoke the claustrophobic heat of South America and lift into abstract saturated colour for the transitions.”

Drawing upon Hawthorn’s vast inventory, Killer Joe’s rig features a combination of moving lights, LED fixtures and generic lanterns. This includes Martin MAC Viper Performance, Martin MAC Encore Performance WRM and ETC Source Four LED Lustr Series 2 Profile fixtures.

Mark Burnett, business development manager at Hawthorn, said: “We were over the moon to be chosen to supply the lighting equipment for one of the West End’s most highly anticipated revivals. Combining a fabulously detailed set by the hugely talented Grace Smart with Richard Howell’s atmospheric lighting design, Killer Joe leaves audiences gripped and unnerved. It’s a huge privilege to see Hawthorn’s equipment play a starring role in such an acclaimed production.”

Talking about his experience working with Hawthorn, Howell said: “They were able to provide us with a varied and flexible lighting package that enabled me to bring my vision for the production to life. The equipment was in good condition and delivered with outstanding customer service. I was particularly impressed by how accommodating they were when we needed to swap and add a few bits at the last minute. Mark Burnett and his team are great to work with.”

photos: Marc Brenner

31st July 2018

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