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Technical Design Solutions for Theatre by Don Harvey, Ben Sammler

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F. Leonard Darby

A System for Rotating Linked Periaktoi

The principal scenic feature in the East Carolina University production of A Chorus Line was a row of nine 14′–6″ tall periaktoi set parallel to plaster. Since A Chorus Line is about dance, it was essential that our periaktoi rotate from spike mark to precisely located spike mark in perfect synchrony, regardless of their speed. As Technical Director for the production I considered and ruled out several means of rotating the units: friction drives, worm gear drives, and chain drives with a sprocket on each periaktos — all would be too expensive or time-consuming. But finally, after batting some ideas around with Pete Feller, Jr. of New York’s Feller Precision, I devised the cable-and-drum ...

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