Structural Design for the Stage  by Alys Holden , Ben Sammler (Author)

This book provides the theater technician with a foundation in structural design allowing an intuitive understanding of why sets "stand up". It introduces the basics of statics and the study of the strength of materials as they apply to typical scenery, with a minimum of theory and many examples.

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Review
"The first book to reach well beyond traditionally available stagecraft texts and present a systematic approach to structural design using methods consistent with those in the field of engineering." - Fritz Schwentker, Theatre Journal, May 2000

"Holden and Sammler are successful in providing what they state as the purpose for this book. That is, a "firm foundation in structural engineering allows a technical designer to explore viable alternatives as well as providing paradigms of thinking about structural systems." - Fritz Schwentker, Theatre Journal, May 2000

"This book succeeds well in teaching how to understand the design choices, and it is this along with curiosity, experience and the accumulated knowledge of the technical designer that are the building blocks to truly understanding theatrical structures." - Fritz Schwentker, Theatre Journal, May 2000

Book Description
This book provides the theater technician with a foundation in structural design allowing an intuitive understanding of why sets "stand up". It introduces the basics of statics and the study of the strength of materials as they apply to typical scenery, with a minimum of theory and many examples. The material is presented such that only a basic knowledge of algebra, geometry and trigonometry is required. This useful text is also invaluable to professionals as a permanent handbook complete with carefully selected reference tables, which are applicable to most theatrical situations.


Traditionally, theatrical design and carpentry are rooted in a craft-based tradition that places a high value on empirically tested techniques; in other words, if it was done that way for a show and nothing fell down, then that's the way it will be done.

Many scenic construction examples with a "how-to" approach
Material organized around one hour lessons with additional problems following each lesson and answers to the even numbered ones in an appendix
Three appendices with reference and design values for common shapes and sizes of lumber, plywood and steel used in theatrical applications

From the Publisher
Traditionally, theatrical design and carpentry are rooted in a craft-based tradition that places a high value on empirically tested techniques -- in other words, if it was done that way for a show and nothing fell down, then that's the way it will be done.

About the Author
Ben Sammler is currently the Chairman of the Department of Technical Design and Production for Yale School of Drama. He is the Production Supervisor for Yale Repertory Theatre and has over seen over 150 productions. Ben Sammler is also an experienced lighting designer and technical director with over 15 years of teaching experience, as well as the co-author of Structural Design for the Stage, 1999 (Focal Press), winner of the Golden Pen Award presented by USITT in 2000.