For 5 years, my team & I photographed the theater sets for nominees & built custom virtual video sets for the Tony Awards broadcast, allowing the performing shows detailed control over every aspect of the scenery, live during the show.
For the five Tony Awards ceremonies from 2011-2015, I was tasked with digitally recreating and animating theater sets that were manipulated live during broadcast, for each of the performing nominees.
My team & I started the process by shooting thousands of photos (and several gigs of reference video) inside the various theaters, in order to capture lighting changes and set elements. The photos were then carefully mined for textures and scenic pieces that are needed. Finally, the finished video-based “sets” are painstakingly constructed from this large bank of imagery and then animated in After Effects and Cinema 4D to the specifications of the director, set & lighting designers.
Lots of hard work and long hours were put into separating & layering the video content so that we could do things like dynamically shift hues and cue lighting & set changes during the performances. Sarah Rossi & Dallas Raleigh shot a BUNCH of custom images for the show, and Dan Baker was always a huge help with creating the sets and animations. Genius programming by Peter “Evil Jesus” Acken.
We made content for 13 performances & many more segments for 2015: