All the sets for ballets and operas that appear on the stage are designed by a set designer. For each of our shows, the set designer makes a miniature version, so that all the people who build and paint the set and scenery, as well as all the performers, can see what the stage will look like. Your challenge now is to make your own stage model in 1:100 scale. This means that it will be 100 times smaller than the real thing.
What you'll need...
2 cereal boxes
1 large piece of thicker cardboard for the base - cardboard packing box material is best
Ruler or set square
Glue stick or PVA glue
Printed model box template
Suitable for ages 5-11. If you're using sharp scissors to cut your cardboard, you may need an adult to help you! Time guideline: 45-60 minutes
The first step is to print out a copy of the template below, and check you have 5 pages; a base, a front with the stage curtains, a back piece and two sides. If you don't have a printer, we've provided measurements at the bottom of this page for you to draw your own template. There are also two tiny ballet dancers to perform on your stage when it is complete. Ready? Let’s go!
Once you've printed or drawn your template, stick the piece marked 'BOTTOM' onto the piece of scrap cardboard.
Cut out with scissors (ask an adult to help).
Next, flatten one of your two cereal boxes out by cutting down one long edge of it. Stick down the 'FRONT' and 'BACK' template pieces on the cereal box as you see in the picture, and then cut these out. Be careful not to cut off the folding tabs! Repeat this process, sticking the pieces marked 'LEFT SIDE' and 'RIGHT SIDE' on your second cereal box.
When you've finished cutting out the templates, they should look like this:
Glue the dancing figures from your main template onto a scrap of cereal box you have not used. Cut carefully around the figures and then fold back along the line so they stand up.
Make sure your front, back and two side pieces are neatly cut out and stuck down with no loose paper on any corners. Using a ruler along the dashed line, fold the tabs. Make sure you are folding in the direction indicated.
To cut out the shaded space on the front and sides, place the Blu Tack under the card and carefully stab a pencil through to the Blu Tack behind. Use the newly created hole to help to start a cut safely then cut out the shaded section to reveal the stage front (what's known as the 'proscenium arch'). Do the same for the left and right pieces.
Now using glue or sticky tape, stick down the folded tabs into position on the base. It is best to glue the back first, then add the sides and finally the front.
Once all the pieces are stuck together, you can decorate your proscenium arch and curtains using coloured pens or paints. Once you have finished, either place your dancing figures into the box, or attach them to a long piece of leftover card so that you can control their dancing from the side. You have now made a 1:100 scale version of the stage! Watch out for more activities over the coming weeks looking at fun ways to create sets and scenery to fill your stage with. In the meantime, if you want to make sets and props for your mini theatre, remember this simple scale rule: if an object is 1 meter in real life, it will measure 1 cm in your model stage. What I have learned...
How to understand and work with scale MATHS
How to create 3D objects from 2D plans, detailed cutting out and precision sticking DESIGN AND TECHNOLOGY
Now that you've created your own unique model theatre, we'd love to showcase your work! Why don't you share your mini Royal Opera House with us on social media? #kuuoliving
If you don't have a printer... You can draw your own template using the following measurements, on a piece of A4 paper. As you draw your template, compare it to the template at the top of this page, so that you can understand where the glue flaps go and where you will need to cut out the shaded sections. Bottom: 23.5cm x 17.5cm
Front: 23.5cm across x 16 cm high. Add a 1.5cm wide tab at the bottom of the front piece so you can glue this to your base. The arch starts 4.8cm from the outside edges (measure and make a small pencil mark from each outside edge). The top of the arch is 3.5cm from the top of the paper. Mark out the arch as a square and use something with a round edge to make the curved corners at the top. You can draw in the swagged curtains freehand.
Back: 23.5cm wide x 16cm tall. Add a 1.5cm wide tab to the bottom for gluing to base.
Two side pieces: 17.5cm wide by 16cm tall. Add flaps for gluing to the bottom (1.5cm wide) and at each side (each at 2cm wide). You need to cut out the middle of each side so you can slide scenery into your model box. Cut out the square so that it leaves a 2.5cm frame all around each piece.
Lastly draw your 2 dancing figures - these are 2cm high and 1.5cm wide.