Water Theater

Katie Pontsler


Theater History

Water Theater

File:Thang Long Water Puppet Theatre2.JPG

The masterpiece of the water theater is a relatively new concept, and therefore, is not entirely understand by the public.  This revolutionary new form of theater has astounding effects amongst its viewers.  Although there are several different forms arising such as theaters floating on top of water, theater stages covered in water, and performances with nothing but water, there are many who wonder how such spectacular displays can happen.  These spectacles captivate the audience and bring out emotions in a new style.  People are lining up to see performances.

The Water Theater Design

There are many types of water theaters.  A British architect, Nicholas Grimshaw, has managed to produce a theater that is on top of water, based off of the fog-basking beetle found in los Palmas, in the Canary Islands, which had learned how to make its own drinking water.  In the form of an amphitheater, this modern day master piece has hundreds of solar panels to evaporate seawater.  It also has evaporators and condensers stacked to maximize energy yield as well to produce clean drinking water.  This theater not only brings in culture and revenue, but provides fresh drinking water.  Performances are held regularly on this 400,000 m2 theater and it can produce 300 million liters of fresh water each day.  If more theaters could be transformed into this style, it could help out thirsty countries throughout the world.

Pei Partnership Architects

There are several theaters designated for dancing on water, but one of the most famous is the “Dancing Water Theater” located in the “City of Dreams” entertainment resort in Macao, China. This theater has become well-known that members come from more than 18 different countries to be part of the 130 strong troupe.  This theater holds about 3.7 million gallons of water which would be more than five Olympic swimming pools (urbarama.com).  These performances are typically based on Chinese folklore and uses water, fire, fog, and other effects.  The interior of this building looks like a Chinese forest with the seats surrounding the center stage, in which the water shoots out of.  The performers incorporate water into their plays making them an incredible site.  Another theater similar to this is the Cloud Gate Theatre in Taiwan.  They perform a piece called “Moon Water” which portrays dancing on water into a vision of loveliness.  Typically this kind of performance is done with beautiful classical music.  The entire floor is completely covered with water, but doesn’t shoot out of the ground like the “Dancing Water Theater”.  In this theater, there is no narrator, no roles, and simple costumes.  The performers just dance on water.  Incredible advancements in technology allow for these beautiful displays.

Bellagio fountain show after dark from Strip with hotel in backgroundMany people have been to fabulous Las Vegas, Nevada.  While walking down “the Strip”, many people stop and wait for the Bellagio Hotel to begin their fountain show which opened in 1998.  This show takes place in 8.5-acre manmade lake in front of the Bellagio Hotel.  This lake has more than 1,200 nozzles and 5,000 lights, costing about $40 million to build.  Once the show begins, typically every 15 minutes in the evening and 30 minutes in the afternoon, 4 different types of jet pipes shoot water up to 500 feet in the air and in different directions to music while the lights transform this into a magical creation.  Currently they have choreographed different songs.  It is not always with this performance as wind can easily effect the direction of the water and occasionally the pipes will not perform as expected.

Although various water theaters are a relatively new idea, it has already had major impact all around the world.  Whether purely for entertainment or also for function, they continue to add to the culture.  These theaters are not only magnificent structures, but may also help out local economies.  As the ideas and dimensions of theater continue to expand, we can appreciate the beauty and unique artistry that comes from displays such as water theaters.










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