Wild Light Theater (final)

Group Three: Amanda Stanton, Ashley Miller, Grayson Wright, Kristian Walker.

Some claim that the theatre and the art of performance is dying, but we could not disagree more. There are many ways in which local community theatre is important, ranging from furthering education to self-expression, introducing change, and more. From the beginning, our team knew we wanted to create a home for local theater groups in South Eugene, located primarily in Amazon Park, that could then be packed up and shared with communities around the US and even around the world, bringing everyone together in shared enjoyment of performance.

Based off the requirements set by the class, our team started by researching forms and characteristics of common shapes and items found in relation to theater that housed elements that we felt would express the vast world of performance and theater. These elements were most often lightness, movement, circulation, and flexible space. Moving forward with our concept our team went through many different designs ranging from shed-like forms that relied on origami-like patterns for construction to conical shapes that enveloped viewer and performer that were comprised of larger construction members.

Our final design focuses on mobility and ease of construction and deconstruction with minimal tools and machinery while making sure not to sacrifice the overall longevity of the structure. The entire structure fits together with a combination of inset screws, knife plates, and custom connections. These connection methods will allow for the structure to be constructed and deconstructed on a seasonal basis at each predestined park, the main park being Amazon Park in South Eugene that is home to local community centers, schools, playgrounds, community pool, dog park, and a skate park. The neighboring community to Amazon Park has South Eugene High School’s Theater Society and community theater groups and classes. Currently, the only amphitheater in town is at Alton Baker Park. Our design brings the arts to Amazon Park and the neighborhood – providing an outdoor space for plays and social gatherings that add to the recreational and community embracing activities of Amazon Park.

While the structure is in motion, it will be transported in a high cube shipping container, which is easily hauled on a standard flatbed trailer pulled by a semi or large truck to each location. Once assembled on site, the whole design comes together in a form that reaches out slightly towards the audience, bridging the gap between performer and spectator. The warmth and scale of the laminated veneer lumber (LVL) and glulam members provide an inviting base for the performers to inhabit while the canopy above provides shelter from the sun and rain while bringing an element of lightness. The canopy also acts as a dynamic backdrop for dramatic lighting and projections depending on the performance, which alleviates the need for bulky set-pieces and large props.

The overall project aims to create a stage and a canopy to tell each play’s story. The light timber canopy provides shelter and a frame to capture the essence of every play’s narrative, while also avoiding creating a heavy, distractive structure. The fabric provides a canvas to paint any setting, from big production plays to local community productions. The project is a new setting for the city of Eugene to imagine and share hundreds of years of storytelling with every generation.

References and Acknowledgments

ArchDaily. 2021. Assembly and Logistics of Wood Projects from Blumer Lehmann. [online] Available at:

<https://www.archdaily.com/catalog/us/products/7746/assembly-and-logistics-for-wood-proj

ects-blumer-lehmann?ad_name=related-products-bottom> [Accessed 1 December 2021].

“Grand Palais Ephémère / Wilmotte & Associés Sa” 01 Oct 2021. ArchDaily. Accessed 30 Nov 2021.

<” target=”_blank” rel=”noreferrer noopener”>https://www.archdaily.com/969443/grand-palais-ephemere-wilmotte-and-associes-sa&gt;; ISSN

0719-8884

Archello. 2021. BEATFUSE! | OBRA Architects | Archello. [online] Available at:

<” target=”_blank” rel=”noreferrer noopener”>https://archello.com/project/beatfuse&gt;; [Accessed 1 December 2021].

Rothoblaas.com. 2021. CONCEALED HOOK TIMBER-TO-TIMBER CONNECTOR | LOCK T | ROTHOBLAAS.

[online] Available at:

<” target=”_blank” rel=”noreferrer noopener”>https://www.rothoblaas.com/products/fastening/brackets-and-plates/concealed-connections/lock-t&gt;; [Accessed 1 December 2021].

Armarchitecture.com.au. 2021. HOTA Outdoor Stage / ARM Architecture. [online] Available at:

<” target=”_blank” rel=”noreferrer noopener”>https://armarchitecture.com.au/projects/hota-outdoor-stage/&gt;; [Accessed 1 December

2021].

Arup.com. 2021. HOTA Outdoor Stage, Gold Coast. [online] Available at:

<” target=”_blank” rel=”noreferrer noopener”>https://www.arup.com/projects/hota-outdoor-stage&gt;; [Accessed 1 December 2021].

“Grand Palais Ephémère / Wilmotte & Associés Sa” 01 Oct 2021. ArchDaily. Accessed 30 Nov 2021.

<” target=”_blank” rel=”noreferrer noopener”>https://www.archdaily.com/969443/grand-palais-ephemere-wilmotte-and-associes-sa&gt;; ISSN

0719-8884

We would like to thank our wonderful professors, Nancy Cheng & Mariapaola Riggio for their unwavering support and advice throughout this process. We would also like to give very special shoutouts to Isaac Martinotti and Sujit Bhandari for their guidance regarding the technical aspects of the design. We would also like to recognize Tom Coates for his outstanding assistance in the University of Oregon’s woodshop. Lastly, one more thank you to our professors for providing an opportunity for University of Oregon and Oregon State University students to work together so that we could create some amazing projects and learn from each other.

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