There was a lot of excitement in the team when Strictly Come Dancing called, asking for our help with a performance from Take That. They would be singing their latest release ‘The Flood’ and wanted to include a water projection screen as part of the signing performance.
The main problem we had to overcome on this job, as with most jobs involving falling water, was how do we catch the water?
There are usually two options, build a tank under the stage or on top of it. We were going to be positioned directly on the famous Strictly dance floor, so there were no options underneath, meaning we had to opt for on top!
Building a tank to catch the falling water may not sound overly taxing, and it isn’t. What makes it difficult is that the tank needed to be removed very quickly so that the rest of the live show could continue. We didn’t have time to pump the water out before we moved the tank, and it was also too heavy to move while full of water.
Furthermore, it is also difficult to move a tank full of water as it could slosh about and spill on the floor.
We combined two different solutions, building a tank with wheels but also pumping the water out during the performance to keep it to a manageable level.
In order to achieve this, we had to locate a crew member on the front row of the audience, who could monitor the level of the tank and turn the pump on and off accordingly.
The lucky crew member who sat on the front row was Phil, our Commerical Director. Not only did he get to meet Len Goodman, but was also shocked when during rehearsal someone asked him what he was doing. It was dark and Phil couldn’t see who was asking the question, so he replied “I’m Phil! I’m doing the water.” The gentleman leant down and replied “Nice to meet you. I’m Robbie. I’m doing the singing!”