Recent Images from World Theater, 2003 -
As a set designer, I have always taken note of theater productions and
theatrical designs which catch my eye. I like big shows and big
productions, flashy scenery and forced perspective, romantic visions and
dramatic effects. Grand opera, especially, has the elements I like.
The British painter John Martin worked on large
canvases during the early 1800's at a time when "theatrical" paintings
toured the Continent and were "slowly revealed" to seated audiences.
Below, "Satan presides over the councils of Hell," c. 1845.
Playwrite and actor Rafael Alberti, on the left, was
influential in "deconstructionist" theater in Europe during the 20's and
30's. Below, in his "Night of War in the Prado Museum," he uses a
nice bull-head of Picasso's.
Below, Federico García Lorca's "The House of Bernarda
Alba" (1936), at the Teatro María Guerrero, Madrid, Spain, directed by
Calixto Bieito, scenery by Alfons Flores, November, 2003. I had
recently done the sets for a "Bernarda" (See: Teatro Vivo de Oaxaca,
Encyclopedia of Images.)
Below, Messiaen's opera, "San Francisco de Asis," at
the 2003 Trienal del Ruhr, Germany.
Below, the operetta parody of Jules Verne's "Captain
Grant's Children" (1865), at the Teatro de la Zarzuela, Madrid, directed
by Paco Mir, October, 2003.
Below, "Daughter of the Air," directed by Jorge
Below, a scene from "The Tribulations of Virginia,"
by the brothers Jomi and Senen Oligor, Madrid, 2003.
Below, "Blind Ness," at La MaMa Theater, New York,
Below, Rossini's opera "Semiramide," Royal Theater of
Below, actor Armando Vanegas as Mephistopholes, in
director Guillermo Vázquez adaptation of Marlowe's "Doctor Fautus," at
the Theater Carpa Geodésica, San Angel, Spain, October, 2004.
Below, a particularly wonderful version of Guiacomo
Puccini's "Turandot," Berlin.
Below, some great kids' costumes for "The Princess
and the Pea" by Hans Christian Andersen, at the Gigantium Concert Hall
in Aalborg, Denmark, April, 2005.
Part of the annual International Cervantino Festival
of the Arts, in Guanajuanto, Jalisco, below, "The Door to Summer,"
directed by Yukichi Matsumoto, State Auditorium, October, 2005.
Below, from the theater La Fua dels Baus, Trinidad,
production "Organ of Light," Madrid.
Below, also from the International Cervantino
Festival, Guanajuato, Jalisco, "Carmina Burana" by Carl Orff (1935),
with artistic direction by Walter Haup.
Below, the University of Valencia, Spain, group Aula
de Teatro, presents a fold-down traveling proscenium version of
Rossini's "The Barber of Seville," in Santander, Spain, July, 2006.
They called their traveling stage La Barraca, based
on the traveling show of the same name by Federico García Lorca, second
from the right, below, early 1930's.
Below, the opera "Ariadne auf Naxos," by Richard
Straus (1912), Covent Garden, London. I like the two-floor effect.
Note the supertitles.
Below, the Bayreuth, Germany, 2006 production of "Rhiengold,"
Below, that same year in Salzburg, Austria, this
production of Mozart's "The Magic Flute," under the artistic direction
of Riccardo Muti.
Below, another wonderful opera set, this for Alan
Berg's "Wozzeck" (1925) at the Gran Teatro del Liceo, Barcelon, Spain.
Below, the Bayreuth production of Wagner's "Siegfried,"
July, 2006. I like the clock on the wall.
Here's one of my favorite plays, Alfred Jarry's "Ubu
Roi" (1896), by the Dundee Rep Theater, below, wonderfully set in a
Below, actors Pawel Miskiewicz and Beata Fudalej in "The
Brothers Karamazov," by Fyodor Dostoevski (1880), at the Greek Festival,
Another of my favorite plays, "Hedda Gabler," Henrik
Ibsen (1991), at Teatre Lliure, Barcelona, Spain, May, 2007.
Below, a scene from Federico García Lorca's "El
Público," directed by Lluís Pasqual, Milan, Italy. Where did they
put the audience?
And finally, a theater memorabilia photo.
Here soprano Victoria de los Angeles enters the stage door of the Gran
Teatro del Liceo in Barcelona, Spain, after the devastating fire which
practically destroyed the opera house, February 4, 1994. The look
on her face says it all.
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