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Re: Staffing requirements

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  • Carolyn Sumners
    Hello All This is in response to the staffing question related to full-dome. Before I describe our situation, I d like to express my enthusiasm for Wonders of
    Message 1 of 8 , Feb 25 3:43 PM
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      Hello All

      This is in response to the staffing question related to full-dome. Before I
      describe our situation, I'd like to express my enthusiasm for Wonders of The
      Universe. Terence Murtagh has a knack for the right mix of narration and
      special effects. The public has responded very well to the experience and we
      highly recommend this E production.

      Now about the staff:

      We have run a full-dome system successfully for 2 years. The
      Astronomy/Technology Department is larger than the Planetarium, but here's
      the staff whose salaries are allocated to the planetarium.

      Planetarium Manager (Carl Huffman) - 100% time
      Responsibilities: staffing, working one day of weekend, Digistar
      programming, Spice programming, about 2-3 shows per day. (Carl also helps in
      the Challenger Center if it's a crisis)

      Planetarium Animation Producer (Tony Butterfield) - 100% time
      Responsibilities: management of the full dome system including aligning
      projectors as well as maintenance of computers, transfer of files, handling
      of render farm and program storage. Tony also produces 10-30 minutes of
      animation for shows each year.

      Planetarium Chief Operator (Jason Zermeno) - 100% time
      Responsibilities: all slides, special effects, sound system, etc. Jason
      also works one day of the weekend and handles 3-4 shows per day.

      Planetarium weekend (and weekday in summers) operators - 12 hours per week
      On days when we run full schedules (12, 1, 1:30, 2, 2:30, 3, 4, 4:30 and
      5 shows) we bring in one part-time operator to do 6-7 of the shows.

      Planetarium teacher (James Wooten) - 50% time
      Responsibilities: school shows on weekday morning, coordinating with
      schools, monthly starchart handouts, teaching 2 shows each day.

      Director of Astronomy (me) - 30% time
      Responsibilities: writing shows, coordinating with shows we bring in or
      have produced off site, program planning, teaching one school show each day.

      Our planetarium show schedule is significant:
      weekdays: 9:30, 10:30, 11:20, 12:00, 1:00, 2:00, and 3:00
      weekends and summer: (optional 10:00 and 11:00), 12:00, 1:00, 1:30,
      2:00, 2:30, 3:00, 4:00, 4:30, 5:00

      Weekend titles
      The 12:00, 1:00, 2:00, 4:00, and 5:00 shows are the full-dome feature.
      The 1:30, 2:30, and 4:30 shows are a prescripted live/taped product
      The 3:"00 show is an old-fashioned star show.

      Weekday titles
      9:30 and 10:30 are school shows (live and interactive)
      12:00 is a live school show targeted for young audiences
      11:20 and 1:00 are full-dome features
      2:00 is the prescripted live/taped product
      3:00 is the old-fashioned star show.

      In the full-dome category, we have offered
      Destination: Moon and Powers of Time (over 50% full dome) - we produced
      Alien Oceans (100% full dome) - we produced
      Wonders of the Universe (100% full dome) - from E
      Force Five (starting in June - 100% full dome) - is being produced in
      Houston

      In the prescripted category we have offered
      Where is Carmen I
      Sailing by the Stars - we produced
      Stars of China (beginning in March) - we are producing
      Carmen II (beginning in June)

      It has taken us two years to get to this point and this schedule does work.
      It has allowed us to remove the laser show from our venue - except for a
      Holiday Lights show which included full dome segments as well.

      The mix of shows has been necessary because there remains a market for the
      old-fashioned star show and for specialty shows that complement exhibits. It
      would be much too expensive to create these specialty shows in full-dome.

      Our goal this year is to do as well without lasers as we have done in the
      past with them. We are slightly revenue positive. We do not have an
      advertising budget, which has made it much more difficult to change public
      awareness of our new system.

      In summary, we added Tony Butterfield when we brought in full-dome, but we
      have lost our laser person when laser went away. So the net is about the
      same.

      I hope this helps. Please give us a visit if you want to see a staff in
      action.

      Carolyn Sumners
    • dondavis@thegrid.net
      Is the all dome community in hibernation or are we all simply busy? A few stills from some all dome animations of mine can be seen in an article at:
      Message 2 of 8 , Apr 14, 2001
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        Is the all dome community in hibernation or are we all simply busy?

        A few stills from some all dome animations of mine can be seen in an
        article at:

        http://www.donaldedavis.com/2001%20addons/domeshow.html

        All were rendered on Macs, using 'Electric image' animation software.

        Don Davis
      • Schmidt Mickey Civ 50 TS/CC
        Don, In regards to perhaps being able to pay for program developement. As you may know I am looking at a program dealing with solar space weather and its
        Message 3 of 8 , Apr 17, 2001
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          Don,

          In regards to perhaps being able to pay for program developement. As you
          may know I am looking at a program dealing with solar space weather and its
          influence on earth, magnetosphere and space hardware. Do you have any art
          related to these topics available? As our plans, the USAF Physics Department
          and the Military Aerospace Class instructors decide exactly on the content
          we'd like we can talk about specific art and graphics.

          Mickey
        • dondavis@thegrid.net
          I truly appreciate inquiries about commissioning work, however such messages should be directed to my private E-mail address and not placed on the listserve.
          Message 4 of 8 , Apr 18, 2001
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            I truly appreciate inquiries about commissioning work, however such
            messages should be directed to my private E-mail address and not placed
            on the listserve. My sincere thanks, and I look forward to seeing more
            happen in this wonderful medium.

            Don Davis

            'May the projectors be banished from the best seats in the house'

            [Your preference is noted. I actually considered forwarding the note
            to you alone, but just hit "approve" instead. I'm sending this to the
            listserve as well, just so folks know. I'll try to catch such stuff
            in the future, though. --RJW]
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