Behind The Limelight

Show Title: 
Behind the Limelight
Directed by: 
Michael Unger
Scenery by: 
Daniel Meeker
Lighting Design by: 
Joel E. Silver

     Behind the Limelight is a new musical by Chris Curtis that follows the life and times of Charlie Chaplin. The story discovers Charlie in a London orphanage and journeys with him thru his time in Vaudeville, his entrance into movies at Max Sennett pictures, his own movie career at Chaplin Studios, and finally into his life in Politics.

     I have been involved with this show thru New York Stage and Film and workshops since 2005. Charlie Chaplin was such a huge person in real life that bringing him to stage has been very challenging. The Challenge of this project for me is that the story wings its way thru Vaudeville and Real World settings as well as movie sets, and dreamlike internal moments. How do you create each of these worlds clearly for the audience to support the journey that Charlie Chaplin is taking?

   I approached this show with a strong use of color to differentiate between time and place. I used the warmer, more open tones, to establish the Movie Studios and used the cooler blues to establish London, Vaudeville, and Charlie's later intimate moments with his future wife. Charlie's dreams were punctuated thru the use of low sidelight to pull the characters away from the world they are really in.

     This project is still in development and I am hoping to continue with a new production sometime soon. Stay tuned to see where the show lands next!