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Raked stage 1:32


BernadetteWard
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1:32 is a ratio that tells you exactly how raked it will be. The stage drops down 1 unit for every 32 units you travel; so if you travel 32cm down stage you will be 1cm lower. If you travel 64cm down stage you will be 2cm lower than you started.

 

It’s a ratio so the measurement units you use don’t matter. Travel 32 inches down stage and you will be 1 inch lower. Travel 32miles downstage and you will be 1 mile lower (and in a totally different theatre :-p)

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If you've never been on a raked stage before, one thing to bear in mind is that even with a very gentle slope, unattended flightcases can gradually roll away unless the castor brakes are on.

 

In one venue not too far from me, someone turned their back on a case during load-in only to find it in the stalls moments later. The slope in there is barely perceptible, it doesn't take much for gravity to bite you.

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I spend a lot of time in a venue that has a 1:42 (averaged, steeper in parts, shallow in other parts).

That rake is steep enough that trucks NEED braking. Steep enough that flats with up/down returns start to make interesting geometry puzzles if you want the upstage flat to stand upright - see also french braces. Steep enough that ladders and talles need orienting the correct way onstage to remain safe. But, not so steep that you have significant movement issues, but anything particularly physical or any high heeled shoes probably wants looking at in the space, with a backup plan in hand.

1:32 is quite a bit steeper than 1:42.

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Steep enough that ladders and tallies need orienting the correct way onstage to remain safe.

 

Back when I was doing my work experience, someone went up a tallie that had been brought on stage the wrong way around, so its angle was double the rake!

Properly deployed outriggers didn't save him, though fortunately it went over before he'd reached the basket and jumped clear, landing on his feet. Top it took out part of the drum kit in the pit though.

 

Not really sure how he didn't notice it was leaning 8º or so to the side though.......

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<br />I've worked a few times on a 1:24. You need spiked shoes and climbing ropes to get all the way upstage...

 

I helped with a theatre sound upgrade and used an empty flight case with a mic stand standing on it to position the mic at a selection of positions while setting up EQ and delay. the rake was 1:26 and it felt like pushing a van upstage and needing to lean against it to go down stage. I was exhausted by the time we finished.

 

I've worked a few times on a 1:24. You need spiked shoes and climbing ropes to get all the way upstage... >
Strange thing is 1:32 doesn't seem to notice when walking around but 1:26 is hard work.
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Years back, I worked on a show that used a custom 1:8 show deck. With a butcher's grass finish in various places.

 

I also remember performing on a similar but maybe slightly less steep rake when I was a kid. The blocking required me to walk straight down stage and then turn SL at the bottom. It was quite an effort not to end up in the stalls every night.

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This is an extract from the Equity guidelines for performing on a rake: "So in general terms at 1:21 or flatter no specific steps need to be taken however if approaching

that boundary it would be wise to consider the implications. At 1:12 or steeper specialist advice should be sought. Between the two all of the factors described should be addressed." The factors referred to are:'movement', 'surface', 'footwear', 'costume', 'access' and 'specialist advice'.

 

these are aimed at performers directed to work on a rake, obviously there are practical things like wheeled items ( scenery, flightcases etc) and so on that technicians and stage managers need to consider.

 

My point s that 1:32 is a very moderate rake, and therefore no real cause for alarm, just common sense. I would say at 1:32 it is generally unlikely that any anti-raking or other modification for furniture, scenery etc would be required, (maybe an extra weight or two on the braces of your flats), the biggest thing to consider would be length of time spent working on the rake - a full three-session day of tech rehearsals might leave everyone with slightly more tired legs than usual.

 

this is from a fairly old agreement (2009) but I don't think the rake guidance has changed...SOLT Equity agreement appendix 3 is the relevant bit.

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