Meaning in the Making: A Vibrant Spectacular of Mind, Hand, and Heart


Summary

An original, 15-minute, immersive, multi-media nighttime spectacular show focused on the relationship between humanity and technology and designed specifically for the incoming MIT Freshman Class and wider community.

Come together as promising scientists and engineers to examine and celebrate how we can use the brilliance of our minds, the power of our hands, and the compassion of our hearts to build a bright and meaningful future. Meaning in the Making: A Vibrant Spectacular of Mind, Hand, and Heart is a fifteen-minute multimedia nighttime spectacular show that transforms MIT’s Walker Memorial with lights, projections, performers, and practical effects to tell the immersive story of Humanity and Technology. The premise of this project is to engage the upcoming freshmen class (and greater MIT community) in an inspirational reflection on MIT’s process of “Mens et Manus (Mind and Hand)” and how delving deeper into our hearts adds color and meaning to what we create. Inspired by Disney nighttime spectaculars and Olympic opening ceremonies, Meaning in the Making was written, directed, and produced as a senior thesis project by recent MIT graduate and Sudler Prize winner, Garrett Parrish. The show will debut on September 3rd at 6:30pm and 10:00pm in MIT’s Walker Memorial, Morss Hall.

Theatrical Video

Interactive 360 Video

Role

Writer, Producer, Creative Director, Technical Director, Video and Effects Programmer

Budget

$8,700 in Direct Funding, $30,000 Value in Equipment and Service Grants

Context

MIT MechE and Entertainment Technology Senior Thesis Project

Timeline

Pre-production and Planning: 7 Months, Production and Mounting: 2 Months

Inception and Writing

Acting as creator and writer, I began with the goal of writing and producing a spectacular show for the MIT community. In the course of pre-production, I wrote several scripts, treatments, and design documents to develop the narrative plan for the show.

Producing

Serving as producer for the project, I raised $8,700 in cash funding for the project as well as over $30,000 in value through equipment and service grants as well. I managed all communication with vendors, departments, investors, and other personnel.

Creative Directing

Serving as Creative Director for the project, I oversaw all creative content development including music, video, lights, choreography, props, and scenic. I created and delegated scope to other artists and made all final creative decisions for the show.

Technical Directing

As Technical Director, I oversaw all technical elements of the show including: equipment procurement and rentals, scenic design and construction, hired labor, show control, load-in/load-out, props, costumes, and emergency procedures.

Production Drawings

Production Calculations and Documentation

Lighting, Video, and Effects Programming

Once the score timing was locked, I served as lighting and video designer for the show. For lighting, I specified out every cue for the show and programmed them on an ETC ION. For video, I used the D3 projection mapping system to map content across four projectors throughout the space.

Music Composition and Production

The original score for the show was the most important creative component, outside of the story. In the course of musical development, I created temp tracks and demos for my composer and worked very closely with him on all aspects of the musical production.

Production Gallery

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