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Dark Theatre Epic Fail...Need serious advice!

rfc143

US
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rfc143 Registered since 03rd Mar 2011
Sun 04-May-14 08:58 PM

So, my lovely wife enters the local talent contest singing a great jazz piece. I bring my 7100, and attempt to get something like a reasonable exposure. Epic Fail.
The performers are intensely lit, from high up, on an absolutly jet black background. I'm far back in the theatre, so use some zoom; start with center spot focus and exposure, but unless the focusing and exposure point is right on a lit area (like a face), the performer blooms out with over exposure.
I tried center weighted; not much better. Tried shutter priority to set the lowest speed and allow the iso to climb; results all over the map.
Finally, went to just setting the iso at "Hi-07", the "no-flash" setting, which I believe is still all auto, just no flash, and got a few properly exposed, and subjects not moving.

Can someone give me a starting point to work with for the future on the settings for this kind of environment---that of a play, or other theatre performance...only requirement is NO flash.

Thanks in advance.
p.s. My wife was fabulous, even if my photos were not!

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