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Publication numberUS3247628 A
Publication typeGrant
Publication dateApr 26, 1966
Filing dateOct 11, 1962
Priority dateOct 11, 1962
Publication numberUS 3247628 A, US 3247628A, US-A-3247628, US3247628 A, US3247628A
InventorsHeisley Miller Elaine
Original AssigneeHeisley Miller Elaine
Export CitationBiBTeX, EndNote, RefMan
External Links: USPTO, USPTO Assignment, Espacenet
Transportable and collapsible stage assembly
US 3247628 A
Abstract  available in
Images(4)
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Claims  available in
Description  (OCR text may contain errors)

E. H. MILLER A ril 26, 1966 TRANSPORTABLE AND GOLLAPSIBLE STAGE ASSEMBLY 4 Sheets-Sheet 1 Filed Oct. 11, 1962 ATTOF/VE'JY E. H. MILLER 3,247,628

TRANSPORTABLE AND COLLAPSIBLE STAGE ASSEMBLY April 26, 1966 4 Sheets-Sheet 3 Filed Oct. 11, 1962 INVENTOR. EAJM/ZAZ/JZEV/II/ZLEH April 26, 1966 E. H. MILLER 3,247,628

TRANSPOHTABLE AND COLLAPSIBLE STAGE ASSEMBLY Filed Oct. 11, 1962 4 Sheets-Sheet 4 United States Patent 3,247,628 TRANSPORTABLE AND COLLAPSIBLE STAGE ASSEMBLY Elaine Heisley Miller, 1898 Queenshen'y Road, Pasadena, Calif. 91104 Filed Oct. 11, 1962, Ser. No. 229,920 6 Claims. (Cl. 52-6) This invention relates to collapsible stage assemblies which may be transported and erected by unskilled labor. The stages are particularly adapted for use by children and amateur theatrical groups.

Collapsible and transportable stages which have been known are costly and are so bulky or heavy as to render them incapable of transportation without considerable effort. Such stages are extremely complex and generall require skilled labor to erect and dismantle. This invention, on the other hand, provides an inexpensive, simple, eflicient and lightweight collapsible and transportable stage. The light weight of the stage permits movement of the stage by children. The simplicity of operation and construction of the stage is such that children or persons normally not skilled in mechanical practices may erect and dismantle the stage.

The stage of this invention has a feature that it provides dressing rooms in conjunction with the stage itself. As a result, the invention finds utility out-of-doors, as for example, at childrens camps or parties as well as at backyard amateur theatrical productions. Another feature of the invention is that it provides a stage which is adjustable in width to accommodate a variety of environments.

Generally speaking, the invention comprises a transportable stage assembly having a pair of spaced apart self-supporting collapsible wing units. A collapsible elongated rigid proscenium transverse arch member is supported by these wing units. A proscenium arch facade member extends between the spaced apart wing units and is supported by the transverse arch member. The invention further includes a traversable curtain disposed between the wing units and supported by the transverse arch member. The curtain extends vertically of the stage assembly from the transverse arch member to a surface supporting the wing units.

More particularly, the stage assembly comprises a pair of spaced apart and self-supporting wing assemblies. Each wing assembly comprises a plurality of stiff rectangular panel elements preferably of equal elongate extents. The elongate extent of each of the rectangular elements preferably is greater than the transverse extent of the element. The panel elements are hingably connected together serially of each other. Hinge means for the wing assemblies are disposed along the elongate extents of the rectangular elements. A stage assembly also includes a proscenium facade member having an elongate extent laterally of the stage assembly. The facade member includes at least a pair of stiff sheet-like elements or panels hingably connected together transversely of the elongate extent of the facade member. An elongated collapsible proscenium arch member, having spaced apart ends and being rigid when installed, is provided. The arch member preferably includes a plurality of elongated rigid sections detachably yet rigidly and coaxially connectable together. Each end of the proscenium arch member includes means engageable with the wing assemblies whereby the arch member is supported between the selfsupporting wing assemblies. Intermediate of its ends, the arch member is adapted to support the facade member. Also, intermediate of the ends of the arch member, means are provided for supporting a movable curtain which is disposed between the spaced apart wing assemblies. The

sible into planar units for transportation. In a preferred form of the invention the dimensions of the collapsed wings and facade are substantially equal.

The foregoing features and objects of the invention will be more fully understood from the following detailed description and explanation of the invention which is taken in conjunction with the accompanying drawings wherein:

FIGURE 1 is an elevational view of an assembled stage unit showing the arch member at its minimum length;

FIGURE 2 is an elevational view of an open or expanded wing assembly;

FIGURE 3 is a top plan view of the assembled stage unit illustrated in FIG. 1;

FIGURE 4 is a schematic plan view of an installed stage assembly illustrating two of the several various configurations of the wing assembly relative to the proscenium arch member;

FIGURE 5 is a cross-sectional illustration of the proscenium arch memer and the proscenium facade member taken along line V-V of FIG. 3; 1

FIGURE 6 is an elevational view of an assembled proscenium arch member;

FIGURE 7 is a bottom plan view of an end of the arch member taken along line VIIVII of FIG. 6;

FIGURE 8 is a cross-sectional elevation of the arch member taken along line VIlI-V1II of FIG. 6;

FIGURE 9 is an enlarged elevational view of a connection mechanism between the elements of the proscenium arch member taken along 'line I X-IX of FIG 6;

FIGURE 10 is a cross-sectional elevational view of a modified embodiment of the proscenium arch member;

FIGURE 11 is a top plan view of an end of the modified proscenium arch member as taken along line XIXI of FIG. 10;

FIGURE 12 is a perspective view of a wing support clip; and

FIGURE 13 is an elevational view of an additional modified proscenium arch member,

Referring to the drawings, FIG. 1 illustrates an erected or assembled stage assembly 20 according to this invention. A pair of self-supporting and spaced apart wing assemblies 21 are provided. A proscenium arch facade member 22 is disposed transversely of the stage assembly 29 and is supported between the spaced apart wing assemblies 21. Traversable drapes or curtains 23 depend from,

the proscenium arch to a surface 24 upon which the free standing self-supporting wing assemblies 21 are supported.

In FIG. 2 a wing unit 21 is illustrated in its opened condition. The wing assembly 21 comprises a plurality of elongated rectangular panel elements 26. The sheet elements 25A, 26B, 26C and 26D are illustrated as having equal elongate extents and equal transverse extents. It is within the scope of this invention, however, that the lateral and transverse extents of the panels 26 may vary and that more or less than four sheet elements 26 may be provided. An additional column element 27 having a narrow lateral extent, but an elongate extent substantially identical to the elongate extents of elements 26 is provided. Column element 27 preferably has a greater thickness than panels 26 since it is required to support the proscenium arch. Elements 26 and 27 are connected together serially of one another with the column element 27 being disposed at one end of the linear or serial arrangement of the wing elements 26. The serial arrangement of the elements 26 and 27 of the wing assembly 21 provides an upper edge 28 and a lower or support surface engaging edge 29. The elements 26 and 27 are hinged together relative to one another along the elongate edges of the respective elements by hinges 30. The hinges 30 illustrated in FIG. 2 are of the fabric strip type wherein a length of flexible fabric, such as canvas or synthetic material, is secured to juxtaposed edges of the serially disposed elements 26 and 27 and bridges the connection between the juxtaposed edges. The fabric strip hinge 30 is secured to the elements 26 and 27 by a suitable glue material or by bonding as by a thermoplastic resin. In a preferred embodiment of the invention, the hinges 30 are disposed on that side of the wing unit 21 which is opposite from the audience, although in other cases both sides of wing 21 may be hing-ably taped. It is also within the scope of this invention that a conventional piano hinge type connection be provided between adjacent ones of the elements 26A, 26B, 26C, 26D and 27.

The panel elements 26 and 27 preferably are fabricated from a rigid stiff material such as corrugated cardboard, plastic sheet, or composition board. Composition board is not preferred to the extent that corrugated cardboard is preferred in view of its increased weight. The panels 26 also may be constructed similar to conventional stage flats and may have rigid peripheral frames over which canvas is stretched.

A series of notch apertures such as notches 31, 32, 33 and 34 is provided in each wing element 21 adjacent the upper edge 28 thereof. The notches open to the upper edge 28 and are rectangular in configuration to engage the arch member 45 so as to secure the arch and facade from tipping. Notches 31 and 32 are configured to receive the arch beam 45 so that its upper surface is flush with wing edge 28. Notches 33 and 34 are of the same depth and extend downwardly from edge 28 a lesser amount than notch apertures 31 and 32. Apertures 34 preferably are wider than notch aperture 33. Aperture 31 is formed in the end flap or terminal column element 27 of the wing assembly. Aperture 32 is formed in panel element 26A adjacent to the juxtaposed edge of element 27 and is the same distance from hinge seam 30 as aperture 31. Aperture 33 is disposed just adjacent the connection between elements 26A and 263 in panel 263. Each of apertures 34 are positioned in elements 268 and 26C and in 260 and 26D, respectively, and are across the extent of the associated hinges 30. It is preferred that the hinge means 30 be according to the flexible fabric type referred to above in view of the positioning of apertures 34. With the use of such hinge means unnotched panel or sheet elements may be secured together in the general arrangement illustrated in FIG. 2, and then the notches 31, 32, 33 and 34 may be formed in the connected plurality of sheet elements 26 and 27. It is noted that more than five notch apertures may be provided in each wing unit 21, even when only four sheet elements 26 are provided in each wing unit 21.

The wing elements 21 are free standing when supported on the support surface 24 and are disposed in configurations similar to those illustrated in exemplary manner in FIGS. 1 and 4. Further explanation and description of the method of positioning the wing assemblies 21 will be presented below.

As illustrated in FIG. 1, a proscenium facade member 22 is provided as a component of the stage assembly 20. The character of the facade 22. is generally similar to a wing unit 21 in that the facade 22 is comprised of a plurality of rigid planar panels 35, 36A and 36B. Elements 36A and 36B are substantially identical in configuration except that, in connection with central element 35, elements 36A and 36B are shown to be mirror images of one another in a preferred embodiment of the invention. The central transverse member element 35, as illustrated, has an elongate straight edge 37 forming the lower edge thereof and a pair of spaced apart parallel end or transverse edges 38 and 39 which are disposed perpendicular to elongate edge 37. It is within the scope of the invention that edge 37 be decoratively curved to carry out a motif printed or painted on facade member 22. Opposite from the elongate bottom edge 37, the central element has an upper edge 40 whichv may be straight, but which, in a preferred form of the invention, is curved to a predetermined configuration in a decorative manner as illustrated in FIG. 1. Each of the end elements 36A and 36B has a lower edge 41A and 41B and a straight transverse edge 42A, 42B. Edges 42A and 42B are perpendicular to edges 41A and 4113, respectively. Elements 35 and 36A and 36B are hingably connected together by hinge means 43 preferably of the flexible fabric strip type referred to above. The hinge means 43 are secured to the elements 35 and 36 on the reverse side of the facade as installed according to FIG. 1. Preferably the elongate extent of the central member 35 between its ends 33 and 39 is no longer than the elongate extent of the elements 26 and 27 of the wing units 21. The transverse extent of the central member 35 is between edges 37 and 4t and preferaly is no greater than the width of a wing unit element 26. On the other hand, the elongate extent of the end proscenium transverse members 36A and 36B is no longer than the elongate extent of the central element 35 such that the end members 36A and 368 may be hinged relative to the central element 35. The central element 35 therefore determines the size of the collapsed transverse member 22. It is within the scope of the invention, however, that transverse member 22 may be comprised of two stiff sheet elements. Additional hinged elements 44A and 44B are shown in FIG. 1 in dashed lines. Elements 44A and 44B are generally similar to elements 36A and 36B and are hinged relative to elements 36A and 36B in the fashion described above. The end elements 44A and 44B are shown in FIG. 1 in their retracted condition behind panels 36A and 36B, and may be folded out to lie coplanar with wing elements 25A. This position corresponds to the minimum spacing between wings 21. When an ex tensible proscenium arch is used to span wings 21 and is in its extreme extended position or in an intermediate position, the end elements 44A and 44B are folded out to lie coplanar with center panel 35 between widely spaced apart wings 21.

As illustrated in FIG. 1 the non-linear edges of the end elements 35A and 363 preferably are configured to conform or mate with the curvature of edge 40 of the central element 35 to provide a decorative outline to the proscenium transverse member 22. It is within the scope of this invention, however, that the end elements 36A and 363 be of any configuration. The lower edge 37 is below the upper ends of the wings 21 when the facade is supported on the arch member 45,

An elongated proscenium arch member 45 is provided to span the space between the spaced apart wing units 21 when the stage assembly 20 is erected (see FIG. 3). The proscenium arch member 45 is illustrated in FIG. 6 as having a pair of rectangularly cross-sectioned central elements 46A and 46B and a pair of end elements 47A and 4713. The elements 46 and 47 are connectable together in a substantially straight line to form a rigid elongated member, yet the elements of the rigid member are dissociable such that the arch member 45 is collapsible for convenient transportation of the components of the stage assembly 20. As illustrated in FIGS. 6 and 8, the adjacent ends of the central members 46A and 46B are cut away to receive a bridge element 48 which spans the connection between the adjacent ends of the elements 45A and 4613. The opposite ends of the bridge element 48 are secured to the juxtaposed overlying portions of the central elements 46A and 4613 by a plurality of throughbolts 49. The through-bolts 49 are clamped securely relative to the central elements 46A and 468 by wing nuts 50. In the preferred form of the invention the through-bolts 49 are disposed vertically through the bridge element 43 and the central elements 46A and 463. To facilitate convenient transportation of the collapsed arch member 45 a conventional hinge 51 is provided in conjunction with the bridge element 43 and spans the junction between the adjacent ends of the central elements 46A and 46B. Alternatively, a conventional hinge may be placed on the underside of arch 45 between members 46A and 463. The elements dA and 463 then abut each other to render the arch capable of supporting the load of the facade 22 and of the drapes 23.

At the spaced apart ends of the central elements 46A and 46B, each of these elements is cut away along its lower edge to form a recess 53. The end elements 47A and 47B are engaged in the recesses 53 and are secured to the central elements 46A and 45B, respectively, by throughbolts 54 extending vertically through the end and central elements. The connection means shown in FIG. 8, however, is only exemplary. As illustrated by way of example in FIG. 7, the end elements 47A and 47B preferably are of a circular cross-section as compared with the rectangular configuration of elements 45A and 45B.

A plurality of wing unit engaging slots are provided along the underside of the end elements 47A and 47B of the arch member 45 at predetermined intervals from one another adjacent the free end of each of elements 47A and 4713. These slots or recesses are denoted as 59A, 59B, 59C and 591). Since the slots 59A-59D are substantially identical in configuration, only recess 59C will be described in detail.

Recess 59C has a forward wall all which lies perpendicular to a longitudinal axis 58 of the element 478 on the rearward side of the element 47B. n the forward side of the element 47B, the wall 60 is inclined toward the end of the arch member element which is secured to the adjacent central element 4613. The slot recess 59C has a second wall 61 which is inclined toward central element 4613 on the rearward side of the rod 478. On the forward side of rod 47B, wall 61 is disposed to lie parallel to wall 60 adjacent thereto. Recesses 59A, 59B, 59C and 59D are dhferent from one another only in that the angle of inclination of the forward portions of walls 6% and 61 varies from recess to recess. The angle of inclination of these wall portions relative to the longitudinal axis 58 of the rod 47% increases progressing toward the central element 468; in slot 59A, the forward portions of walls 60 and 61 are disposed at substantially right angles to the longitudinal axis 58 of end element 473, The reason for such variation in the slot recess configurations will be described below.

In a preferred embodiment of this invention the central elements 46A and 46B of the proscenium arch member 45 are fabricated from wood having a rectangular cross-section to enable the arch element member to sustain the weight of the proscenium transverse member 22 without visible bowing or curvature of the arch member. Also, the rectangular cross-section of elements 46A and 46B cooperates with rectangular apertures 31 in wing column elements 27 to prevent the normally top-heavy facade-arch combination from tipping relative to the wings 21. Similarly, it is preferred that the arch member and elements 47A and 478 be fabricated of wood, both for the sake of light weight and inexpensive material and for simplicity of construction. It is within the scope of this invention, however, that the elements 4-6, 47 of the proscenium arch member 45 be fabricated of lightweight metallic or plastic sections.

In assembling the stage 20 provided by this invention, the wing units 21 are spaced apart from one another and are placed in a self-supporting or free standing condition by moving the elements 26, 27 of the wing units into a predetermined configuration by movement of the elements relative to one another through the function of the hinge means 363. In such condition, each wing unit 21 is supported on the supporting surface 24 along the lower edge 29, see FIGS. 3 and 4. During the alignment of the various elements 26, 27 of each wing unit into the predetermined or desired orientation, the end elements 47A or 47B of the assembled and rigid proscenium arch member 45 are engaged with the wing elements 21. The end 6 element 47B, for example, is engaged with aperture 32, 33 or 34, of a wing unit 21 such that support of the arch member 45 is obtained by the wing units 21. Primary support of the arch member 45 is provided by wing column element 27 which has its aperture 31 engaged with the outer end of an arch unit 46A or 463. As shown in FIG. 3, wing unit, when engaged with arch 45, is angled outwardly and rearwardly of the arch so that the inner edge of Wing panel 26A overlaps facade 22 and so that the outer end of drape panel 23 lies behind and outwardly of the inner edge of wing panel 26A, The angles of wing elements 27 and 26A relative to arch 45 may be assured by beveling the vertical edges of apertures 31 and 32. As is illustrated by the solid lines in FIG. 4,

I 4, the dashed lines represent an alternate disposition of wing unit 21 and a different connection to arch member and element 475. In this case aperture 34 across the connection of sheet elements 26B and 26C is engaged with one of slots 59B, 59C or 59D. The inclination of the forward portions of the slots assures that the wing unit 21 is snugly engaged with the slot. The spacing of the recesses 59 one from another is determined as a function of the widths of elements 26A and 26B, while the inclination of recess walls 60 and 61 relative to the axis 58 of end element 4-73 is determined in accord with the geometry of elements 26A, 26B, and 47B for each recess 59. It is noted at this point that during the use of the stage assembly 20 the configuration of the wing units 21 provides an enclosed area which may be used advantageously as a dressing room for those persons using the stage assembly 2%.

The proscenium arch member 45 has a forward side 64 and a rearward 65 (see FIGS. 5, 6, 7 and 8). A plurality of proscenium facade support brackets 67 are provided at spaced apart locations along the forward side 64 of the arch member (see FIG. 9). As illustrated, each support bracket 67 has a planar section 68 which is secured against the forward side 64 of the arch member by a plurality of screws 69 passed therethrough into the arch member. At one end of the planar section 63, a semicircular portion 70 is provided which is concave toward the arch member .5. A corresponding plurality of hooklike elements 71 are secured to the reverse side 72 of the proscenium transverse member 22 and are spaced apart from one another at intervals corresponding to the spacing between the brackets 67. The hook-like element 71 extends rearwardly from the proscenium transverse member 22 and then downwardly in a leg portion 73 substantially parallel to the reverse side 72 of the transverse member 22. Depending portion 73 is engageable within the semi-circular portion 70 of bracket 67' (as illustrated in FIG. 5) and supports the proscenium transverse member 22. Alternatively, as shown in FIG. 3, the facade 22 may be secured to arch 45 by bolts extending through the arch and facade with the facade being held against the arch by wing-nuts. As illustrated in FIG. 5 the lower edge 37 of the proscenium transverse member is spaced somewhat below the lowermost extent of the proscenium arch member 45 in order to shield the proscenium arch member 45 and the curtain traversing mechanism from view.

It was mentioned that the stage assembly 20 provided by this invention includes as a component a pair of traversable or movable drapes 23. Drape or curtain traverse rod means 75, such as commercially available telescoping traverse rod as sold under the trade name i? Kirsch, is provided in conjunction with the stage assembly 20. A traverse rod means 75 of either the wall or ceiling type preferably is secured to the rearward side 65 of the proscenium arch member 45 by means of suitable brackets held to the proscenium arch member by screws 77. The brackets 76 normally are sold in conjunction with the traverse rod 75.

In the apparatus described above, the proscenium arch member has a predetermined length. In many instances, however, it may be desired to use the stage assembly provided by this invention in a room which has a limited width. In many cases the width of the room is less than the elongated extent of the assembled arch member 45. It is therefore desirable that the arch member, in such situations, have a variable length, yet still provide the functions described above. Accordingly, this invention includes a second preferred embodiment of the proscenium arch member. Referring to FIGS. 10 and 11, a variable length arch member 80 is illustrated. The arch member 80 has one or more central elements 81 of a rectangular hollow cross-section. These elements may be secured together coaxially of one another by conventional means such as by male and female threaded fittings, but since such connections are conventional the details thereof are not illustrated or described in detail. A proscenium arch member end element 82 is provided and has a solid elongated rod portion 83 preferably of circular cross-section of less diameter than the interior diameter of the hollow central portions 81. The rod 83 is thus axially movable of and within the central element 81 of the arch member 80. Positioning and locking of the rod 83 rela tive to the arch member central element 81 is provided by a thumbscrew 84 which is threaded through an aperture 85 in the end of arch member central element 91 to engage the rod portion 83. Where desired, a backup element or plate 86 is secured to the exterior of the central element 81 adjacent the aperture 65. The backup plate 86 serves as a reinforcement for the arch member central element 81 and also provides the primary threaded portion with which the thumbscrew 84 is engaged.

The rod portion 83 has an end 87 which is spaced apart from and not engaged within the arch member central element 81. An extension member 88 projects beyond the rod portion end 87 and lies substantially parallel to the rod portion 83. The extension 88 is secured to the rod 83 by a pair of oppositely disposed flanges 89 which are crimped around the end 87. It is preferred that the extension 83 be disposed on the upper side of the arch member end element 82 when the end element is connected to one of the central elements 81. The extension 88 projects to an end 99 which is spaced from rod portion end 87. A pair of wing unit engaging arms 9% and 92 are movably, but lockably, connected to the extension end 90 by a wing nut and bolt combination 93. The bolt of the combination 93 is passed through apertures in planar end portions 94 and 95 of the arms 91 and 92, respectively, such that upon tightening of the wing nut the planar portions 94, 95 are clamped against the end 90 of the extensions 88. Between the planar portions 94 and 95 and the remote ends of the respective arms, each of the arms 91 and 92 has a pair of parallelly oriented downwardly depending flanges 96 and 97 which are disposed longitudinally of the elongate extent of the arms 91 and 92. In assembling the stage assembly 20, the wing unit 21 is engaged with the proscenium arch member 31) by disposing the upper extents of adjacent sheet elements 26 adjacent one of the hinge means between the flanges 96 and 97 of the arms 91 and 92. The central portion 81 of the arch member end element 80 is engaged in an aperture similar to aperture 31 described above in conjunction with the wing column element terminal member 27 (see FIG. 4). The proscenium arch member construction described above provides that the elongate extent of the arch member 81) is adjustable to conform to the limitations of the environment in which the stage assembly 20 is used. Alternatively, extension 88 may be slidably and releasably connected directly to tubular arch member 89.

It was noted above that the facade is top-heavy with respect to the arch which is disposed adjacent the lower edge 37 of the facade. FIG. 13 illustrates means whereby the inherent instability of the facade with respect to the arch is prevented from being troublesome. Arch 109 is a modified extensible arch and has a pair of opposite end members 161 which are slidable within a tubular central member 102. Each end member 101 has mounted thereto a facade brace strip 102 which has a plurality of apertures 104 therein along its length. An intermediate facade brace 105 is mounted, preferably pivotally, to central element 102. Depending on the degree of extension of the arch 100, the facade elements 103 and 105 intersect at a common point. A bolt 1% is passed through the stays at this point and also through the facade 22 at a location above the arch 190. The facade 22 is secured to the stays by engaging a nut 107 with the bolt. This connection augments the connections of the facade to the arch, which connections may be bolts passed through facade 22, as shown in FIG. 3.

The arch 1% has the drape traverse means contained within the arch proper. It is within the scope of the invention that arch 180 be constructed with the traverse rod attached to its rear or bottom surface.

FIGURE 12 illustrates a wing panel support member 115. If the stage assembly 20 is used out-of-doors where a breeze might tend to change the positioning of the panels 26 of a wing unit 21, the support member is engaged with the bottom edge of a wing panel, as for example, panel 2D as shown in FIG. 12. The support member 115 has a plurality of upstanding fingers or flanges 116 and 117 extending from a horizontal planar ground engaging portion 118. Flanges 116 are coplanar and are spaced on opposite lateral sides of the central flange 117 which is parallel to, but spaced apart from, flanges 116. The panel 26D is engaged between the flanges 116 and 117. The horizontal planar body 118 of the support member has an aperture 119 formed through it at a location spaced from flanges 116 and 117. A conventional tent-stake or peg may be driven into the ground through aperture 119 to secure the support memher in a selected location. The peg may be dispensed with in many cases since, in many instances, the support member 115 alone provides a stable base for the panel 26D. The support member 115 is also useful in situations where the supporting surface is not level; the body of the support may be bent into a desired shape to provide engagement with the supporting surface so that end wing panel 26D does not swing relative to panel 26C.

From the foregoing discussion and description of this invention it is seen that the invention provides a stage assembly 2% which may be disassembled readily for convenient storage and transportation of the components of the stage assembly. The components of the stage assembly 20 collapse into compact and lightweight units. The simplicity of construction and assembly of the stage is such that the stage may be assembled by the members of a childrens theater organization. The method of construction of the units of the stage assembly is such that the device is inexpensive.

While the invention has been described above in conjunction with specific apparatus and configurations thereof, this has been by way of example and illustration only and is not to be considered as a limitation to the scope of this invention.

What is claimed is:

1. A transportable stage assembly comprising: a pair of similar collapsible spaced apart free-standing and selfsupporting wing units, each wing unit being comprised of a plurality of rigid planar elements having opposite vertical edges and a single narrow rigid planar column element having opposite vertical edges and an upper end, each of the plurality of elements and the column element having a straight bottom edge, the column element and the plurality of elements being disposed adjacent each other in a serial angularly related free standing arrangement with the bottom edges thereof aligned to lie in a substantially common supporting plane and with the column element being disposed at one end of the serial arrangement, means disposed along the vertical edges of adjacent elements of said serial arrangement for hingably connecting said adjacent elements together, the column element of each wing unit defining an upwardly open notch at its upper end; a rigid yet collapsible elongated proscenium arch beam extending between the spaced apart wing units and removably engaged adjacent each of its opposite ends in the column element notch of the cooperating wing unit for removable support of the beam by the wing units and the column elements thereof; an extension member extending substantially axially of the beam from each end thereof, each extension member at a location spaced from the column element engaged with the cooperating wing unit at a location spaced from the column element of said wing unit for securing at least those ones of the plurality of elements of the wing unit between the column element and said location in a selected angular relation to one another; a traversable curtain disposed between the spaced apart wing units and depending from the beam to a surface supporting the wing units; and selectively operable means carried by the beam for supporting the curtain and operable for opening and closing the curtain, the curtain in its closed condition closing the space between the wing units.

2. A transportable stage assembly according to claim 1 wherein the proscenium arch beam comprises a telescoping assembly of hollow tubular elements and the selectively operable means for supporting the curtain are disposed in the telescoping assembly, whereby the length of of the beam between the ends thereof is selectively variable to accommodate a selected spacing between the wing units.

3. A transportable stage assembly according to claim 1 wherein each means carried by the extension members comprises a pair of arms pivotally mounted to the extension member remote from the beam, each arm defining a pair of depending spaced apart parallel flanges, the flanges of each arm bracketing the upper extent of one element of a selected adjacent pair of the plurality of wing unit elements adjacent the connection of said one element to the other element of the pair, and means for securing the arms in a selected angular relation to the extension member, the pair of elements and those elements of the plurality between the pair and the column element of the wing unit thereby being disposed in a selected angular relation relative to one another.

4. A transportable stage assembly comprising: a pair of similar spaced apart free-standing and self-supporting wing units, each wing unit being comprised of a plurality of rigid planar panel elements and a single narrow rigid planar column element having an upper end, each of the panel elements and the column element having a straight bottom edge, the column element and the panel elements being disposed adjacent each other in a serial angularly related free standing arrangement with the bottom edges thereof aligned to lie in a substantially common supporting plane and with the column element being disposed at one end of the serial arrangement, means for hingably connecting together adjacent elements of said serial arrangement, the column element of each wing unit defining an upwardly open notch at its upper end, a plurality of openings formed through each Wing unit at locations spaced from the column element along the serial arrangement and spaced from said aligned bottom edges a distance substantially equal to the distance the notch is spaced from the aligned bottom edges; a rigid yet collapsible elongated proscenium arch beam extending between the spaced apart wing units and removably engaged adjacent each of its opposite ends in the column element notch of the cooperating wing unit for removable support of the beam by the spaced apart wing units and the column elements thereof; a collapsible planar facade assembly carried by the beam and extending at least between the spaced apart wing units; an extension member extending substantially axially of the beam from each end thereof, each extension member at selected locations spaced from the beam defining a plurality of slots, the extension member extending through a selected one of the plurality of openings in the cooperating wing unit, the wing unit adjacent the selected opening being engaged in a selected one of the slots so that those ones of the panel elements of the wing unit between the column element and the selected opening are secured in a selected angular relation to one another; a traversable curtain disposed between the spaced apart wing units and depending from the beam to a surface supporting the wing units; and selectively operable means carried by the beam for supporting the curtain and operable for opening and closing the curtain, the curtain in its closed condition closing the space between the wing units.

5. A transportable stage assembly comprising: a pair of similar free-standing and self-supporting wing units spaced a selected d stance apart from each other, each wing unit being comprised of a plurality of rigid planar panel elements and a single narrow rigid planar column element having an upper end, each of the plurality of panel elements and the column element having a straight bottom edge, the column element and the panel elements being disposed adjacent each other in a serial angularly related free standing arrangement with the bottom edges thereof aligned to lie in a substantially common supporting plane and with the column element being disposed at one end of the serial arrangement, means for hingably connecting together adjacent elements of said serial arrangement, the column element of each wing unit defining an upwardly open notch at its upper end; a rigid telescoping elongated'hollow proscenium arch beam extending between the spaced apart wing units and removably engaged at each of its opposite ends in the column element notch of the cooperating wing unit for removable support of the beam by the column elements; a collapsible planar facade assembly carried by the beam and extending at least between the spaced apart wing units; an extension member extending substantially axially of the beam from each end thereof, each extension member at a location spaced from the beam defining means engaged with the cooperating wing unit at a location spaced from the column element of said wing unit for securing at least those ones of the panel elements of the wing unit between the column element and said location in a selected angular relation to one another; a traversable curtain disposed between the spaced apart wing units and depending from the beam to a surface supporting the wing units; and selectively operable means carried by the beam internally thereof for supporting the curtain and operable for opening and closing the curtain, the curtain in its closed condition closing the space between the wing units.

6. A transportable stage assembly comprising: a pair of similar free-standing and self-supporting wing units spaced a selected distance apart from each other, each wing unit being comprised of a plurality of rigid planar elements and a single narrow rigid planar column element having an upper end, each of the plurality of elements and the column element having a straight bottom edge,

the column element and the plurality of elements being disposed adjacent each other in a serial angularly related free standing arrangement with the bottom edges thereof aligned to lie in a substantially common supporting plane and with the column element being disposed at one end of the serial arrangement, means for hingably connecting together adjacent elements of said serial arrangement, the column element of each wing unit defining an upwardiy open notch at its upper end; a rigid yet collapsible elon- 1 l gated proscenium arch beam extending between the spaced apart wing units and engaged at locations spaced apart along the beam a distance corresponding to the selected distance between the wing units in the column element notches of the wing units for removable support of the beam by the column elements; an extension member extending substantially axially of the beam from each end thereof, each extension member at a location spaced from the column element engaged with the cooperating wing unit at a location spaced from the column element of said wing unit for securing at least those ones of the pluralityof elements of the wing unit between the column element and said location in a selected angular relation to one another, the ones of the plurality of elements of at least one of the wing units opposite said location from the column element being disposed so that said wing unit defines a chamber adapted for use as a dressing room; a traversable curtain disposed between the spaced apart wing units and depending from the beam to a surface supporting the wing units; and selectively operable means carried by the beam for supporting the curtain and operable for opening and closing the curtain, the curtain in its closed condition closing the space between the wing units.

1?. References Cited by the Examiner UNITED STATES PATENTS 232,573 9/1880 Torrey 160-234 539,226 5/1895 Lorenz 5270 984,735 2/1911 Bailey 46--13 1,232,168 7/1917 Aronson 52641 1,343,065 6/1920 Suyehiro 46-19 1,384,190 7/1921 Graham 160-234 1,583,775 5/1926 Brandt 4613 1,600,554 9/1926 Marquis 46-13 1,881,356 10/1932 Gold 4619 2,283,104 5/1942 Surman 4613 2,705,386 4/1955 Bertram 46-13 FOREIGN PATENTS 655 1954 Great Britain. 537,779 1956 7 Italy.

FRANK L. ABBOTT, Primary Examiner.

JACOB L. NACKENGFF, RICHARD W. COOKE, JP..,

Examiners.

R. A. STENZEL, Assistant Examiner.

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Classifications
U.S. Classification52/6, D25/58, 52/76, 446/82, 52/632, 160/135, 52/239, 446/478
International ClassificationA63J1/00
Cooperative ClassificationA63J1/00
European ClassificationA63J1/00