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Most Amazing Stage Backdrops
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What makes a stage production memorable? Obviously the skills and talents of those performing, the staging and props, and perhaps the company of the people attending the event with you.
One thing that is often vastly underrated is the contribution that the setting makes to a performance, something that we at Unistage appreciate immensely.
A stunning backdrop creates a suitable atmosphere for any event, helping to communicate the mood of the performance to the audience and allowing the cast to submerge themselves in the characters or music.
The right backdrop can, quite simply, turn an event into a spectacle. Let’s take a look at some of the most amazing stage backdrops from around the world that repeatedly draw the crowds.
Nature’s Own Backdrop
Any performance at the Minack Theatre must struggle to compete with this rugged aquatic outlook. The cliffside at Porthcurno provides stunning views over the bay for each of the 710 seated audience members.
With a schedule of musicals, operas and plays running from Easter to the end of September the crashing waves and unpredictable weather must surely add to the atmosphere.
Best suited to: Shakespeare’s The Tempest
Looks Can Be Deceiving
Believe it or not, this is one single painted backdrop! It demonstrates how intricate brushwork can create the illusion of depth on the stage, causing us to believe that the stairs and lights are real.
This proves that regardless of the venue, a stunning backdrop can set the scene perfectly.
Best suited to: Beauty and the Beast
The ancient Greek theatre of Taormina provides a dramatic backdrop for both musical and theatrical performances. Strategic lighting emphasises the 2800 year-old ruins which must act as inspiration to both the performers and audience.
The sheer scale of these pillars dwarfs the artistes and creates the perfect scene for the performance of a big Greek Tragedy.
Best suited to: Euripides’ The Bacchae
Setting The Scene
Sometimes the best backdrops can be created from everyday features. During Vivid Sydney, landmark buildings around the city are illuminated with projected light patterns, forming the most stunning scenes.
The light spectacular forms a unique stage for quirky international and local musicians who perform throughout the 23-day festival of light.
Best suited to: Bjork
This hundred-year-old theatre needs little artwork to improve on its structural features. The ceiling is adorned with beech leaves and lanterns, creating a beautiful, ethereal, outdoor setting.
With such a natural backdrop, it’s easy for the audience to forget that they are in a theatre.
Best suited to: Shakespeare’s A Midsummer Night’s Dream
Built specifically for the Catalan Choral Society, this venue provides a fascinating backdrop for performances. Having enjoyed nearly 110 years of use, the Palau de la Musica hosts more than 600 concerts every year.
The audience can delight themselves by gazing at the beautiful carvings and sculptures while treating their ears to musical performances from both classical and contemporary acts.
Best suited to: Vivaldi’s Four Seasons
Big performances require bold backdrops. Here, the cast of Mary Poppins is nearly lost in this impressively colourful background. It suits the whimsical theme of the musical perfectly and provides a feast for the eyes.
Fantastical scenery such as this creates the perfect atmosphere to draw in the audience and make them part of the performance.
Best suited to: Mary Poppins
Since 1946, the Seebühne (floating stage) at Bregenz Festival, Austria has been providing a musical extravaganza every 2 years. The production makes use of the water and stunning surroundings to set the scene for big classic operas.
Large casts can easily be accommodated on the massive stages to keep the 7000-strong audience enthralled.
Best suited to: Verdi’s Aida
Den Norske Opera & Ballett
A realistic backdrop, such as this one at Den Norske Opera & Ballett, can transport an audience away from the theatre and into the performance itself. The use of additional staging material in front of the backdrop provides a platform for the orchestra and soloists, allowing them to fill the massive space with music and movement.
Best suited to: Britten’s War Requiem
A backdrop is just one of the many elements of a successful performance. If you’re preparing your next production, why not put your staging requirements in safe hands with Unistage? Get in touch with our helpful team to see how we can help turn your next show into a spectacular.