Daniella is fortunate to work at the New Victoria Theatre, a vibrant producing theatre in the heart of The Potteries. The New Vic creates its own shows as well as housing touring productions, so there’s always plenty to keep track of. She has a varied job which includes designing lighting for five main house shows a year. You might have seen her work in The Wicked Lady, The Borrowers, 101 Dalmatians and the most recent Christmas show, The Snow Queen. As well as lighting design, she manages all aspects of production electrics and makes practicals, projection pyrotechnics and flying elements. Daniella is always keen to learn and try new things and so works on a freelance basis on other theatre productions and installation work.
She tells me that she first got involved with Wavemaker by attending one of their workshops with her children: “We all had a great time at the workshop but I also liked the way they were set up with a range of state of the art equipment. I could see lots of possibilities for using their facilities, particularly equipment that we don’t have access to at the theatre. So when we had the chandeliers to make for our Christmas show, The Snow Queen, I approached them to ask if it was possible to produce them at Wavemaker out of vinyl. Ben and Alex said ‘yes’ and that was the first project we produced using the vinyl cutter. This was an exciting opportunity because it enabled me to make the chandeliers to our exact specification and design.”
Since then, Daniella has been to other events with her children and will be providing a workshop for Wavemaker during the summer holidays. She said: “We’ve decided to call the session ‘Electro Fashion’! It will allow young people to learn how to customise their clothing and shoes. They will use conductive thread and ultra-thin LEDs that can be sewn into clothing – no soldering needed”.
One of the things that has kept Daniella returning to Wavemaker is the “excitement and enthusiasm of Ben McManus (Wavemaker’s CEO) and Alex Rowley (Operations Manager). They support and encourage you no matter what project you come up with”. She has also enjoyed being part of a local creative hub where anyone can go to ask questions, investigate and to grow. “What’s exciting about Wavemaker is that they create a bridge between ideas and being able to achieve them – both professionally and in educational terms.”
“I have found them an invaluable resource and great partner to work with. In the future, I would like to see them growing in size so more people can visit and have a great time getting to grips with tech in a fun environment.”