A dolls’ house without dolls

A visit to an extraordinary dolls’ house this week suggested some of the differences between dolls’ houses and working models for theatre. Queen Mary’s Dolls’ House is a spectacular dolls’ house, designed by Edwin Lutyens, and built between 1921 and 1924. It is at 1:12 scale, with murals by William Nicholson and Edmund Dulac, fully… Continue reading A dolls’ house without dolls

‘Taking the Space’ – Phyllida Lloyd

This year's Jocelyn Herbert lecture will be given by director Phyllida Lloyd, whose work includes Mary Stuart, Mamma Mia! and the recent all-female Shakespeare Trilogy for the Donmar Warehouse. In  'Taking the Space', she reflects on the impact of design on her productions for theatre, opera and film. Fri 3 Nov, 6pm Running Time: 45… Continue reading ‘Taking the Space’ – Phyllida Lloyd

Listening to the scenography

There was an unexpected and moving demonstration of the power of Jocelyn Herbert’s scenography as part of Oliver Taplin’s contribution to the recent conference New Light on Tony Harrison. After speaking about his collaborations and long friendship with Harrison, and how the experience of live performance had changed scholars’ ideas about classical drama, Taplin said… Continue reading Listening to the scenography

Travels in the archive: how a mermaid led to Poland, Italy and Berlin…

A couple of weeks ago, I spotted this programme on a shelf in the Research Room of the National Theatre Archive. Jennie, the Archive Assistant, explained that a former Trustee of the Theatre Royal, Norwich had donated her personal collection of theatre programmes from the 1980s - relating to shows at the National and at… Continue reading Travels in the archive: how a mermaid led to Poland, Italy and Berlin…

The Right Light

In Nick Moran's new book The Right Light: Interviews with Contemporary Lighting Designers he talks to lighting designers who work in very different contexts, from West End shows to site-specific performance. The chapters draw out different aspects of the process, and Moran provides a helpful commentary to illuminate the context for readers unfamiliar with the structures or technology of lighting. Most… Continue reading The Right Light

The Jocelyn Herbert Archive

Jocelyn Herbert (1917-2003) was one of Britain’s leading theatre designers. She transformed earlier assumptions about the relationships between designers, directors and writers, and had a huge influence on younger designers. Her career began with the English Stage Company at the Royal Court, where she designed the first British production of Ionesco's The Chairs (1958). She collaborated closely over… Continue reading The Jocelyn Herbert Archive