Starlight Bowl (San Diego)
- Starlight Bowl (San Diego)
The Starlight Bowl is an amphitheater located in Balboa Park in San Diego, California. It seats 4,300. It is the home of the San Diego Civic Light Opera, which performs several Broadway musicals each year.
The amphitheater is unusual in that it is almost directly under the landing path for San Diego International Airport. During performances the conductor has a set of lights that indicate the noise level from passing planes. When the noise reaches a certain level the conductor signals everyone to pause, and the musicians and performers wait until the plane has passed. Depending on the conductor this can be awkward -- obviously the conductor chooses when to pause the performance, and sometimes it seems as though this is taken as an opportunity to play with the performers. Dancers sometimes have to balance on one foot in mid-step for ten to fifteen seconds, holding a pose, and then resume their routine, singing and dancing as if nothing happened. Singers are sometimes left in the middle of an a capella solo, having to (hopefully) find the right note again after the pause.
Another quirk of the performances is the little red box, which is used in (nearly) all performances. It is sometimes simply used as background, part of a set. Other times it is carried on stage by the performers, and even passed around from one to another.
* List of contemporary amphitheatres
* [http://www.sandiego.gov/park-and-recreation/parks/balboa/facilities6.shtml San Diego Parks & Recreation Website]
* [http://www.starlighttheatre.org/ The web site of the San Diego Civic Light Opera organization]
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