Once Upon a Time
Courtesy of Rick Parker
Both Rick Parker and his horse, Hilda
were in the SHINING TIME STATION Family Special: Once Upon a Time. As Rick explains below...
I doubled Ed Begley in western gear
racing along side the train on my chesnut quarter horse mare Hilda. I proceeded to jump on the train and she continued running.
This took place in Tottenham , Ont.
She is now 33 years of age. Enjoying retired
life on the farm.
BTS of the SHINING TIME STATION Family Special:
Once upon a Time
left to right : assistant wrangler; Brian Roworth , actor Ed Begley jr.
stunt double Rick Parker, horse Hilda (owner Rick Parker). Picture taken in Tottenham , Ont. in 1994.
Photo courtesy Rick Parker (with our thanks).
One of the Family /Queen for
Courtesy of Bentley Miller
Bentley Miller's work with SHINING TIME
STATION began as a Gaffer in Seasons 2-3, then as a Lighting Designer for the Family Specials
and Mr. Conductor's Thomas Tales. Bentley shares photos he had taken behind-the-scenes during the taping of the Family
Specials: One of the Family, and Queen for a Day. Many thanks, Bentley,
for sharing these with us for all fans to see!
SHINING TIME STATION set during the taping of Queen
for a Day (1995)
photo courtesy of Bentley Miller
What's behind the station wall?
Where and how the characters entered the station from the
'platform' has always been a bit of a mystery. Bentley provides us with an idea of what lay beyond our line
of sight. In his own words...
"As far as the BTS of the platform it was very uncomplicated.
I will describe it here (ed. refer to drawing below). The wings of the set extended another 10' beyond what you could
see on camera. There were simple steps that allowed the actors to enter/exit. As the set mostly filled the studio there was
very little additional space for characters. So, they waited in place off-stage for their entrance or exited off stage and
waited for cut to be called. Behind the window on the platform we constructed a Zoetrope."
"A Zoetrope is basically a slotted wheel mounted on a stand.
We shone a light through the Zoetrope to indicate trains coming and going into the station. The Zoetrope was hand operated
by a stage hand and the light was controlled from our lighting console."
"The Zoetrope was about 2' across. The shape of the light
came from the angle of the light source. It was situated slightly below the bottom of the window. Speed, direction and rotation
were determined by the script and the operator. The pickets were uniform, about 4" across 8 " high. At the time we gave
this effect a lot of thought to get it right. But now, so many years down to road it is difficult to remember with clarity
what we said. We did get it right though, mostly. No one is perfect!"
"The light was slightly below to create the skewing effect
of the train movement. The Zoetrope was affixed to an axle of sorts so that it spun on axis. I can't remember exactly the
axle construction , but it was simple. Simple is best theory. Less like to fail during a take. This was mounted on a base
so that it performed like a turntable. "
"The window pane shadows that you see on the wall
and on the floor were gobos (steel patterns projected from an ellipsoidal projector) of window patterns. There were used to
create interest by breaking up the surface texture of the wall, indicating that there was light coming from an unknown/unexplained
source.We were trying to create the illusion of light from a source that the audience never saw."
The Juke Box Puppet Band
Courtesy of Craig Marin
Craig Marin and his Flexitoon artisans worked
their magic to present us with musical performances by the Juke Box Puppet Band. Here, Craig shares a few
behind-the-scenes photos where you can finally appreciate the people whose names appeared in the SHINING TIME
STATION end credits. (All photos courtesy Craig Marin with our many thanks! posted 2013-08-18)
The FLEXITOON voice talent behind the JUKE BOX PUPPET BAND
From left to right: - Peter Baird (GRACE), Alan Semok
(TEX), Craig Marin (REX, J.J. SILVERS), Ken Miele (GRACE) and Jonathan Freeman (TITO). Photo taken at BEND-EMS toy launch
Alan (TEX) Semok (L) Jonathan (TITO) Freeman (C) and
Craig Marin (R) working on the band's performance of Michael Row the Boat Ashore
Craig and Jonathan setting up a green screen
scene for the band's performance of Jesse James
Craig directing the Juke Box Band
From the taping of the Lullaby home video
special: Alan Semok holds the Boy Brothers; Jonathan Freeman readies Tito; Craig (in the hole) directs; as producer Rick Siggelkow
checks the shot.
Olga ("Didi") Felgemacher & Peter Baird ready
Tito and his voice - Jonathan Freeman (R)
THE ENTIRE JUKE BOX BAND FLEXITEAM with Producers
Britt Allcroft and Rick Siggelkow (click image to see larger version)