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Removed Attractions Removed Attractions/shows, etc.

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  #11  
Old July 13th, 2009, 01:02 PM
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Default The Costumes

David T. Blackburn and his staff dealt with all matters concerning costume direction with the exception of clothing for the specialty acts. In such cases, special designers were hired to design the attire.

The costumes were provided by the Six Flags wardrobe department and a manufacturing company called Factory Sales from 1962 to 1965. The wardrobe department also handled stock items and simple articles of clothing. Shoes were ordered from a commercial house then dyed to match the color of the costumes. Special props like canes, hats, and umbrellas were ordered from companies which specialized in making them.

At the end of the season, all the costumes were stored in the park's costume warehouse to await their fate. Some were thrown away while others were later altered for the next season's show. Others were saved for use by the Crazy Band to be worn as part of the members' mixed-up uniform.

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  #12  
Old July 13th, 2009, 02:16 PM
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Default The Amphitheatre - 1961

Construction of the Amphitheatre began on July 13, 1961 in an area once used as a dairy farm's water hole. The place was chosen because it was located on the slant of a hill, making the construction easier and cheaper. There were 800 L-shaped, slab concrete seats which had already been crafted. The stage was a square block of concrete. It had two wings on each side and a fence around the backstage area. However, there was no roof of any kind. It had one entrance, which started in the front and traveled through the middle. The amphitheatre was constructed in such a way that anyone see the stage from across the street because the entrance wasn't elevated. This was fixed in 1962 by raising the natural slope.

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Old July 13th, 2009, 02:32 PM
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Default The Amphitheatre - 1962

In 1962, two hundered seats at the stage right area were built by narrowing a truck passageway behind the Skull Island loading dock. Another two hundred were built in the area over the cave roof of La Salle's Riverboat Adventure. The power supply was installed behind the stage instead of the front. The park also built a concrete walkway between the stage and the dressing room area along with six wings and two borders located between the curtain and the orchestra. Each border covered two wings, leaving two wings uncovered.

The stage curtain was colored orange and the front border was green with orange pennant. There were two pennants for each cast member. Every pair of pennants represented the college or university a student attended, complete with the name and school colors of the institution. A large letter "G" standing for the fictional Gilchrist University was placed in the center of the front border. The "G" was painted orange, black, green, and white to match the season's color scheme. The borders were painted a dark green. However, the pennants made it look multi-colored.

The dressing rooms were built stage left offstage. Unfortunately, the construction crew made them too small and next to impossible to serve their purpose.

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Old July 13th, 2009, 04:00 PM
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Default The Amphitheatre - 1963

In 1963, the remaining poles standing in the wings of the Amphitheatre were removed and pavement put in their place.

The stage's front roof received an awning made from bamboo. The only problem with this was the fact that it collected the rain. This caused the water to drip onto the concrete stage during performances and made it very dangerous for the dancers to perform their routines. This was made even worse because the stage surface was covered with epoxy, a cement seal which was mixed with colors.

The park added another two wings for the stage and a small building behind the back curtain for the pigeons that were being used in a magic act.

The park also tried unsuccessfully to expand the dressing room area. This proved impossible because there wasn't any space left, thanks to the orchestra dressing room being directly behind the cast dressing room.

The Amphitheatre had a seating capacity of 1,200 by 1963 and a new roof was erected. Construction started in late June and ended on July Eighteenth. This provided protection from the glaring sun and pouring rain.


Last edited by cleusk; July 13th, 2009 at 09:04 PM.
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  #15  
Old July 13th, 2009, 07:28 PM
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Default The Amphitheatre - 1964 and 1965

The downstage area of the stage was extended into the audience so the performers could have enough room away from the risers. A wooden floor was built over the concrete floor. The design of the "G" was changed. The orange letter had a gold Baroque trim. A blue area surrounded the letter and had a white trim on a white border.

The park wanted daytime shows at the Amphitheatre as a way to help crowded areas deal with heavy traffic. To make this possible, management felt it was necessary to provide air-conditioning. Workers attached one-half inch Number 18 Louvremesh steel on top of the white lattice frame which circled the Amphitheatre's circumference. The air-conditioning ducts were attached to the steel at specific positions and angles to provide the most effective results. After the installation, the ducts blew much needed air-conditioning on both the audience and the cast members.

In addition to the air-conditioning, the amphitheatre's stage received a new metal roof. As a result, the crew was forced to have the scenery lowered on long pipes called battens and be raised out of the roof.

In March, workers built a lattice work wall at the amphitheatre's entrance. Located in the center was a billboard with the performers' names on it along with the schools they attended. To create a theatre marquee effect, lights were positioned to shine a light on the billboard as evening approached. Two curved sidewalks bordered by flower gardens were also added to the entrance.

Nothing was changed in 1965 except the color of the letter "G" in accordance to the new color scheme. This time around the "G" was orange with a white trim set against a dark border.

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  #16  
Old July 13th, 2009, 07:53 PM
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Default The Lighting - 1961 and 1962

In the beginning, the Amphitheatre had no lighting. There were no spotlights or spot platforms, just the lights shining from the trees surrounding the stage. The only time Six Flags provided proper lighting was during rare special event. On such occasions, a spotlight was rented.

This changed for the 1962 season when the park used lighting equipment for the very first time. The park bought two spot troupers and had them installed on a platform at the entrance. Unfortunately, the electricians didn't know how to hang them correctly. As a result, they put the lekos in upside-down on the yokes. Remaining in the upside-down position till 1963, this misplacement caused the lamps to burn out more quickly. This ended up to be a costly mistake because the lighting equipment burned out the lamp after four to five hours of service. Since the cost of a lamp was $8.68 each, the total cost for the lamps was almost fifty dollars a day.


Last edited by cleusk; July 13th, 2009 at 09:54 PM.
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  #17  
Old July 13th, 2009, 09:03 PM
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Default The Lighting - 1963

In 1963, the park made an effort to correct and improve the lighting system. Before the new metal roof was put into place, the lights were removed, rearranged, and refocused. Leading the effort was Charles Meeker III, Michael Jenkins, and Ken Moyer. For two nights, they worked from 11pm to 6am. They picked the shift because they would be able to work uninterrupted and because it was the best time to focus the lights. In addition to the lights, the trio ran into problems with the dimmer which had been provided by the Little Stage Lighting Company in Dallas. On a continuous basis, every time the three men connected the lights, something blew out and they couldn't find out why. Eventually, they figured out that half of the time, the problem could be traced to the dimmer board. They spent half their time tracing bad lamps, shorts, and other mishaps. Many times that year, the dimmers burned out. They were packed up the same night and replaced by new ones to be used for the next evening. The inventor of this dimmer system made periodic visits to work on the dimmer board, give it a few tweaks, and make necessary adjustments.

The park also made an effort to arrange the lights in a logical sequence and order. There were twelve units on each of the two battens at the beginning of the year. In the late summer when the roof was built, the park added a third batten to hang from it.

In the words of Michael Jenkins, "The lights were on poles; and when the new roof was put in, we took everything off the poles and rearranged and readjusted again to put the heaviest and the longest throw lights out in the new roof."

The equipment hung on a pipe behind one of the borders. A special roof built for the equipment was nothing more than plywood nailed down on the back to prevent the lights from getting wet as a result of the rain. There were twelve lekos for each batten. In fact, most of the equipment were leko with the exception of twelve fresnels. Five super lekos were put in front of the trouper platform in June. However, they were only used for the 1963 season.

In the past, there were four light poles with four to six instruments on each one. Two of them stood behind the first two wings on each side of the stage.

One of the things that made the 1963 College Revue unique was the overabundant use of blue bulbs for the grand finale. Six thousand of them were hung on all the poles circling the amphitheatre. An extra 8,000-watt power stat dimmer was rented to power the bulbs in addition to the dimming equipment to control the lights.

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  #18  
Old July 13th, 2009, 11:39 PM
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Default The Lighting - 1964

In 1964, the equipment used from previous productions were used whenever the entire cast was on stage and the spotlights from the back were used for duets and solos. During the solos and duets, the rest of the stage was dimmed out. The people operating the back spotlight had to climb a side ladder to get to the platform. There was no roof protection for this equipment, so it was covered every night so the elements wouldn't ruin them. However, because it was located in the very back, it didn't obstruct the view of any patrons.

The lighting equipment was placed in six positions for the 1964 revue : the platform located at the amphitheatre's back, the beams of the cabled roof, the projected ceiling, the first batten, the overhead equipment, and the back lights.

Seven scoop lights were lined up on the stage floor between partitions to provide colored lighting for each section of the show. The lighting shone upon a white wall backdrop. However, the operators of the scoop lights ran into problems becuase the lights were on alternating circuits and had to be changed to the color for each section. The color schemes were as follows : red - Mexico, magenta - France, lavender - Texas, orange - America, and blue - Confederacy.

During the show, the cast was on stage for the entire time, causing the lighting to play a central role in unifying the show. The curtain was close only once during the show for a specialty act. The spotlight was concentrated on three performers who portrayed a father and his two sons while the rest of the cast changed costumes in complete darkness.
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  #19  
Old July 13th, 2009, 11:53 PM
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Default The Lighting - 1965

In 1965, the only special lighting was an ellipsoidal spotlight hanging directly over LBJ in the opening scene of the revue. The curtain parted to reveal the president and two reporters. The device was located almost in the middle of the roof because the stage had no grid. The special lighting was created by the two spotlights at the back. To spotlight a person on stage, they were dimmed down to general lighting. Meanwhile, scoops provided background lighting on a white wall seen through the windows of the Bedford Hall backdrop.

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  #20  
Old July 14th, 2009, 08:22 AM
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Default 1962 Production - Part One

For all the Campus Revue productions, a story or theme was used as a way to tie all the acts together as a cohesive unit. When the producers and directors decided they wanted to have a college theme, they created the fictional Gilchrist University as a tribute to the founder of Six Flags, Angus Wynne Jr. The university setting was used for three of the four revues from 1962 to 1965.

The name for the revue's first season in 1962 was "The Six Flags Campus Revues. The plot revolved loosely around a visiting professor falling in love with the president's daughter on graduation day. It was split into two scenes. The first one dealt with the Gilchrist graduation ceremony and the second covered the senior show. The graduation ceremony of the first scene felt apt, especially for the students, because the premier performance was held near the time of college graduation. During the senior scene of the second scene, each member of the graduation class was asked to something he or she was good at. Twenty-six people performed the revue. In addition to the singers and dancers, there were ventriloquists, musicians, a juggler, and a magician.

The first scene of the revue occurred in the university's auditorium. The second one took place outdoors. While the first scene didn't need much in terms of stagecraft, the second did.

For the outdoor scene, the crew painted trees on a hinged canvas partition to be used as the back wall. Portable trees were built in halves so they could be folded up and placed behind the stage when not in use. When they were needed the crew pushed them out of the wings. The crew also painted the wing front to look like a trunk. Its hidden branches and leaves were unfolded for the scene to form a complete tree on both sides, creating a 3-D effect to the set. The scene was made up of of six beam units. Each was six feet long. They were placed on stage wagons. These wagons were six foot by two foot platforms on wheels. All of the units were rolled onto the stage, fitted together, locked together, then weighted with sandbags on the back.

In the opening scene, everyone was dressed in graduation caps and gowns. Even the ventriloquist dummies wore graduation clothes. The caps and gowns were either bright orange or lime green. The students wore one color while the teachers wore the other. Every other night, the students and teachers changed colors. The colors used during the outside scene was orange and white to recognize the fact that Angus Wynne Jr. graduated from the University of Texas. In the second scene, the guys wore white shirts, orange bow ties, black slacks, sneakers, and orange pull-over vests with a white letter "G" on them. The gals wore white cheerleader skirts, white blouses, white shoes, and orange over-blouses with a white letter "G".


Last edited by cleusk; July 14th, 2009 at 11:48 AM.
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