Saturday, 20 October 2012

The Judas Kiss at the Gaiety Theatre.

A memorable visit to the Gaiety Theatre in Dublin on Thursday evening last (18th October 2012) to see the, Robert Fox, Chichester Festival Theatre and Theatre Royal Bath Productions presentation of  The Hampstead Theatre Production of “The Judas Kiss” written by David Hare and directed by Neil Armfield.
The set for the production is designed by scenographer Dale Ferguson, costumes designed by Sue Blane, lighting design by Rick Fisher and sound design is by Paul Groothuis.

Act I is set in a London hotel room as Oscar arrives from the court and forgoing the option to run, awaits the arrival of the police to arrest him. The setting is large and dark with a sense of Victorian opulence. This is achieved by setting the corner-set diagonally to the auditorium with a jogged run of high black flats on stage right and a great, broad swag of black crushed velvet draped as a canopy over a large, splendid brass bed with black enamelled posts. The velvet drape forms the wall behind the bed and seams to pour across the floor filling all of the acting space down to the apron of the stage. The jogged panels of the black wall accommodate a large wall clock with a wall mounted oil lamp either side, and upstage panel has a narrow vertical window ope, allowing sun light in and the occupants of the room a view onto the street below. There is long, dark, leather upholstered, button back couch under the wall clock and two, black velvet draped occasional tables, set against the wall, one under each of the oil lamps. Centre stage is occupied by a large carved wooden framed chair with leather upholstered seat and studded back panel with a wine table beside it. There is a square top restaurant table set to stage left with a serving trolley and a single chair. The entrances and exits are made down stage left and right between the ends of the set and the tormentor flats.  

Act II is set some years later in Naples, Wilde is down in mood and financially broke, and while Bose is having a good time he is preparing his departure strategy and abandonment of Oscar.

The Act II setting is again large, and while following the same setting lines as in Act I, in this act it is bright and has a sense of Mediterranean lightness. This is achieved by presenting the corner-set diagonally to the auditorium with the jogged run of high black flats on stage right rearranged to give an upstage opening with the window flat now set stage left of the opening. A bright shaft of Mediterranean sunlight comes through the window ope, adding to the sense of the location and the time of day.
Whereas in Act I a great, broad swag of black crushed velvet draped as a canopy over a large, brass bed; In Act II there is a large white gauze draped high over a basic iron bed. It forms the wall behind the bed and seams to pour down onto the floor.
The set was supportive of the play, giving an appropriately styled setting for the performers without distracting from the performance but with enough visual cues to stimulate the imagination of the audience into visualising the rest.
My pencil illustrations show my interpretation of the stage plan for Acts I and II, and an impression of the elevated view.
Sue Blane’s costumes gave credibility to the characters, creating a sense of the fashion and style of the period and by way of contrast the service liveries of the hotel staff.
Lighting designer Rick Fisher’s light changes met the mood of the play’s moments and the strategy of having a moving beam of light travel over the furniture pieces to indicate the passage of time was very effective.
Director: Neil Armfield:         
Set Design:  Dale Ferguson         
Costume Design: Sue Blane          
Lighting Design: Rick Fisher:       
Wig Mistress: Helen Keelan:  


Friday, 5 October 2012

Talk of the Town at the Project Theatre

This vibrant production by Landmark Productions in collaboration with Hatch Theatre Company is well worth making every effort to see and experience this theatrical presentation.

Emma Donoghue’s script is set in Ranelagh, Dublin 1927 and in New York during the period 1949 to 1960s. The Scenographer cleverly and satisfactorily accommodates all the performance areas in one multiplex set. The Ranelagh, Dublin 1927 set is upstage centre, softened and visually isolated by partial screens. The New York performance areas are downstage centre, left and right, with receding depth achieved for the New York scenes by access corridor effects set into the scenery on stage left and right of the upstage centre Dublin set.

The main character Maeve Brennan an Irish immigrant living in New York and writing for the “The New Yorker” magazine, has reflective moments of childhood in Ireland, catching memories, some disturbing for her “Irish Stories”. These memory scenes are played out in the Ranelagh setting centre back by a composite family of Mother, Father and Daughter (young girl). The action in these scenes is presented as a manifestation of what is in Maeve Brennan’s mind’s eye, with Maeve Brennan down stage right or centre thinking, writing or imagining in her New York apartment.  The subtleness and the haunting effect is effectively lit by lighting designer Natasha Chivers. The New York settings of Paul O’ Mahony’s concept have a bigness about them that says enough for the audience fill in the canvas of their mind. O’Mahony’s set and Chiver’s lighting allow the smartness and sharpness of costume designer Peter O’Brien’s Manhattan costumes to not only support the characters, personalities, gender, occupation and social economic standing but to support the sense of time and place of the story. The importance of hair and make-up in establishing the character’s personality, composure, presence and the time and place of the scene can be seen in the hair and make-up work of make-up designer Sharon Ennis.

For students of design for stage and screen attending the show, who can tear their attention away from the gripping performances and give attention to how the designers establish not only the visual style but how their work says so much about the characters being performed.

The production was supported by the Irish Theatre Trust.

Paul O’ Mahony Set Design

Natasha Chivers:

Sharon Ennis:

Landmark Productions: 

Hatch Theatre Company:

Project Theatre:            

Patrick M for

Monday, 1 October 2012

The Last Summer by Declan Hughes at The Gate Theatre, Dublin

An interesting and engaging piece of new writing by Declan Hughes set in Glenageary - Dalkey during 1977 and thirty years later, 2007.  Toby Frow’s interpretation and direction of the production was engaging and entertaining. The opening light change and low musical introduction prepared the receptive minds of the audience for transportation into the opening act. The performance area was framed by black wing flats and a black false proscenium.

The set, a satisfactory manifestation of the Scenographer, Robert Innes Hopkins collaboration with the Director, Lighting Designer and cast; gives the cast, the production team and the audience a very satisfactory design concept to work with.

The story is set over two days in August 1977 and two days thirty years later August 2007. Needless to say there are two versions of the characters the teenagers of 1977 and the adults of 2007. Both groups appropriately and ably dressed in the style of the period by Costume designer Joan O’Cleary.

 The rotation of the set by the younger or older characters (depending on which time the scene is set in) when accompanied by Lighting designer, Paul Keogan’s subtle, atmospheric light changes and Sound Designer Richard Hammarton’s soundscapes bestows a “Time Machine” quality to the set.  

The rotating central set pieces of a garden wall (both front and back) with no gate in the opening, all mounted on an irregular shaped trucked polygon rostrum, rotated smoothly about a hidden central pivot on the deck of the stage. The arching garden/kerb side branches and the “perspective diminishing” street lights set against a dark background behind the acting area focused the audience’s attention on the performance area.

This set works and works well both as a very versatile, appropriate and visually satisfying environment supporting the script the director and the performers’ interpretation.


The work of Costume Designer Joan O’Cleary maps the characters and their roles into the two periods and the location in which the play is set. It is challenging to design for plays set in the recent or not too distant past. Although there is plenty of visual reference for the period, the challenge is to dress the performers appropriately to their character, the time, place, socioeconomic position and in doing so not to be caught out in choosing the historically correct item which looks visually incorrect. That is, unless some such item is required by the script.

 Through her Costume Designs, Joan establishes the characters in the style of each period, their age, their gender, their socio-economic standing, occupation and their demographic and again her work contributes hugely to establishing the where and when of this play.

The resetting of the furniture, dressing props and hand props by the cast between the acts was well done and maintained the theatrical illusion.

Declan Hughes, Writer: 

Toby Frow, Director:               Toby Frow - Casarotto – Home

Joan O’Cleary, Costume:

Paul Keogan Lighting :  

Gate Theatre:                

Monday, 24 September 2012

Tracking Third Level Graduates

How Europe Tracks Students
September 24, 2012 - 3:00am
It has become an article of faith among many policy makers in the United States that the country needs better data about student progress through higher education and into the work force. The perceived inadequacy of currently available federal and state information, for accountability and institutional improvement purposes alike, has prompted a drive by the Obama administration and its foundation partners in the “completion agenda” to strengthen federal, and state and institutional data collection and usage.

Read more:
Inside Higher Ed

For more, click on the link below

Stage and Screen

The Abbey Theatre & The Irish Film and Television Academy (IFTA)
IFTA is delighted to announce that The Abbey Theatre is offering IFTA Members a 10% discount on performances Monday - Wednesday.
Coming up next month, IFTA Members can avail of this discount on Neil Bartlett's adaptation of Oscar Wilde's The Picture of Dorian Gray which runs from October 15 - November 17. This discounted rate may also be used on Gary Duggans' Shibari which takes place on the Peacock stage from October 4 - November 3.

Sunday, 19 August 2012

A Woman of no Importance at the Gate Theatre, Dublin.

At The Gate Theatre, Dublin till 22nd Sept 2012

On Wednesday evening last (15th August) I enjoyed a performance of Oscar Wilde’s play A Woman of no Importance at The Gate Theatre. The production is directed by Patrick Mason, Set Designed by Eileen Diss, Costume Design by Peter O’Brien, Lighting Design by Paul Keogan, Hair and Make-up Design by Anne Dunne.

The interpretation on staged presentation resulting from the collaboration between the Director and Designers is visually appealing, effective and economical. The controlled pallet and tones of both Set and Costume focused the audience’s attention on the delivery of the author’s words and the performance of the cast. The metallic like material in the unadorned costumes of the seated Lady Pontefract and that of Lady Hunstanton gave them the formidable appearance of occupied armoured personnel carriers

The dimly lit set is visible to the audience as they take their seats and the performance opens with a subtle light change to the leafy dappled light of a conservatory at a great English country house and the quiet arrival on stage of some of the characters.

The play is scripted to open on a terrace lawn at a large English country house, followed by an after dinner scene in a drawing room and the final scene in the picture gallery of Mrs Arbuthnot’s home.

Eileen Diss successfully adopts the concept of a large mid19th century cast iron conservatory as a structural matrix to accommodate the scenic needs of this period play. The design, allows for the seamless, smooth, unfolding of the play, in that it minimises the interruption of scene changes between the acts on the immersion and engagement of the audience in the performance. This theatrical immersion was ably supported by the elegant resetting of the furniture, dressing props and hand props by the in-character cast between the acts.

The restrained tone and mono-chrominance of the set, costumes and set dressings does give a look to the production akin to a slightly faded, late Victorian photograph. This early photograph ambience is supported and maintained by Paul Keoghan’s subtle and unobtrusive lighting and lighting changes that bring us from sun lit, leafy exterior to lamp lit moodier evening and daytime interiors.

Costume Designer, Peter O’Brien’s costume concepts ably and with restrained aplomb, reflect the Director, Patrick Mason’s darker interpretation of Wild’s play. The “good” formidable ladies of society directing and pontificating from within the protective, folded metallic like sheets of their fortress dresses, the disarming, brash, innocence of the assertive visitor from the new world in an elegant white dress and the dark haired, darkly dressed, abandoned, fallen woman who struggles against the mores of late Victorian society to protect her son and promote his interests. The men, adorned in their smart attire, as appropriate to their stature and time of day, strut, shuffle and pose as the complacent heirs of the male dominated society of the time.

Anne Dunne’s Hair and Make-up Designs are convincing and ably support the performers in their characters and reflect the style of society at the time.

The comments and sketches in the programme by the designers Eileen Diss and Peter O’Brien are informative in giving their insight into some of the thought process behind the concept development. For students of Design for Performance and for Stage and Screen, this input from the Designers is to be welcomed and encouraged, thank you Eileen and Peter.

Eileen Diss:       

Peter O’Brien:   

Paul Keogan:    

Anne Dunne:     

Saturday, 11 August 2012

The Plough and the Stars at the Abbey at The O’Reilly Theatre, Dublin

The Plough and the Stars at the Abbey at The O’Reilly Theatre, Dublin

I had the good fortune last night to get into town in time to catch a pre-show talk by Richard Boyd Barrett TD on Sean O’ Casey at the Abbey at The O’Reilly Theatre, Belvedere. The talk, titled “O’Casey and Politics” was under the banner of the Abbey Theatres “Other Voices” series of talks 

Boyd Barrett’s talk spoke of O’ Casey the socialist and how his political beliefs shaped his view of events leading up to, during and after the Easter Rising of 1916 and how the horrors, confusion and dichotomies of what O’Casey witnessed shaped his interpretation of the consequences of the events as expressed in his writing of The Plough and The Stars. 

For me, Wayne Jordan’s interpretation and direction of the production is engaging and informative at times riveting and at times inspiring. The down stage opening tinkle on an old up-right piano in front of a dirty large off-white front cloth engaged the prepared minds of the audience for transportation into the opening act. The front cloth gathered its self up into a border, rucked like a stowed sail on a square rig spar. Apart from its evocative and decorative presence, it set the upper margin to the framing of the stage. 

The revealed set conveyed the oppressive gloom of the spaces inhabited by the poor and the working class city dwellers of Dublin at that time. The construction of the set, its texture, its fabric, its decor and its lighting echoed a previous life of the building as being one of Colonial Dublin’s, second city of the Empire, grand Georgian town houses. Now it is but one of many, a gutted shell of cramped sparse privacy and little comfort against which Nora Clitheroe (played by Kelly Campbell) strives maintain some small sense of civility and dignity.
Scenographer, Tom Piper’s concept for the set conveys all of this very well, the lit central performance area and lighter toned floor recede upwards and outwards through the dark textured tones of the set into the blackness of the flys and the wings, allowing the audience’s attention to remain focused on the performers.

The cage like structure of H section reinforced steel joists (RSJ)s functioned as elements not only to divide the space but they also held back the crumbling edifice from tumbling in on the occupants.  

I am in two minds as regards setting some of the contemporary lamps so visibly on stage, on both sides of the set. While they are a visible reminder that we are looking at a period performance on a contemporary stage, they were also incongruous, a jarring visual paradox against the ambience and atmosphere created by the characters, the costumes and the predominant statement of the set .

The brass, shell like reflectors of the period foot lights, while saying one thing they were contradicted by being augmented by contemporary lamps on floor stands. 

That said Tom Pipers set works and works well both as an appropriate and visually satisfying environment supporting the script the director and the performers interpretation. Also to be borne in mind is that this is a touring production, see below.  

The work of Costume Designer Joan O’Cleary maps the characters and their roles into the period. Through her Costume Designs, Joan establishes the characters, their age, their gender, their socio-economic standing, occupation and their demographic and contributes hugely to establishing the where and when of the play. 

Sinead Mc Kenna’s lighting design contributed to establishing and maintaining the overall gloom but where appropriate, brought changes in mood to the scenes and defined the different areas of performance.  

The off stage sound effects by Ben Delaney were very effective and prompted the convincing reactions of the performers. 

The resetting of the furniture, dressing props and hand props by the cast between the acts was well done and maintained the theatrical illusion.  

You can see “The Plough and The Stars” when it tours Ireland and the UK this autumn.

1.      Grand Opera House, Belfast. Tues 18 – Sat 22 Sept.

2.      An Grianán, Letterkenny. Tues 25 – Sat 29 Sept.

3.      Cambridge Arts Theatre, Cambridge. Tues 2 – Sat 6 Oct.

4.      Birmingham Repertory Theatre, Birmingham. Tues 9 – Sat 13 Oct.

5.      Theatre Royal, Bath. Tues 16 – Sat 20 Oct.

6.      Siamsa Tire, Tralee. Tues 23 – Sat 27 Oct. Assisted performance Thurs 25 Oct.

7.      The Lime Tree, Mary immaculate College, Limerick. Tues 30 Oct – Sat 3 Nov. Assisted performance Thurs 1 Nov.

Richard Boyd Barrett:

Tom Piper:               

Sinead McKenna:    

Joan O’Cleary:         

 Abbey Theatre:       

Monday, 30 July 2012

Olympics Opening Ceremony

What an amazing piece of theatre design went into the opening ceremony of the Olympics See how some of it was done at:

There are interviews with the Olympic Cauldron Designer, Thomas Heatherwick at:

and at: <!-- Start of guardian embedded video -->

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Friday, 13 July 2012

Paul Simon in Concert at the 02, Dublin

Last night (Thursday 12th July) I had the good fortune of being treated to see and hear Paul Simon in Concert at the 02. The concert featured the Graceland suite including the Ladysmith Black Mambazo, whose vocals, with their distinctive rhythm and cadence are only astonishing. The main feature was of course Paul Simon himself, who performed to the delight of his audience with great panache, energy and completeness. A live performance by an artist of the calibre of Paul Simon and his team could only be mesmerizing as this concert was and his performance was further enhanced by emotionally charged moments that bonded audience and performers in momentary unified entity.

From a Scenographer’s (Set Designer) the stage presentation was visually and logistically well thought out. Bearing in mind that this is a touring show, it was a visually appealing apparently simple and smart presentation. The stage surface had a light tonal finish which worked well with the coloured lighting and projected imagery.

Hanging over the back of the stage was a composition of three large panels onto which images appeared to be projected. They could have been large Plasma or LED screens with a queued programme of images fed to them interspersed with a feed from the onstage cameras. In all the presentation (despite some very jerky and abrupt lighting changes) worked well and supported the atmosphere and ambiance of the concert more than it hindered it.

Patrick Molloy for

Tuesday, 10 July 2012

Tom Murphy’s “The House” at the Abbey Theatre

Tom Murphy’s “The House” at the Abbey Theatre, Designed by Paul O’ Mahony a graduate of IADT P.Des and Motley Theatre Design School, London.

Costumes by Niamh Lunny a graduate  of Limerick College of Art & Design
This is a must see for students and professional practitioners alike of Scenography, Design for Stage & Screen and Theatre/Stage Craft.

I think this is the last week of its run at the Abbey, check it out at:

Paul’s set design is a very clever, well thought through solution that is visually very satisfying and works extremely well in all aspects expected of a stage set. The sets lend an appropriate level of ambience to each scene, assigning a restrained supportive sense of place and period style to each act. The transitions from scene to scene are magical in themselves and speak volumes for the professionalism, technical wizardry and stag craft competence of the Designer, the Abbey team and the construction team.

Niamh Lunny’s Costume Designs lend credibility to the characters and supported the performances of the cast in doing so. Her costumes, supported by make-up and hair designers; Val Sherlock and Lorraine Brennan established the social standing and occupation of the characters and set them in a time and place.
Lighting Designer Chahine Yavroyan’s collaborative contribution, enhanced the ambience and atmosphere of the presentation and augmented the dramatic moments with her deft lighting

Patrick Molloy for

Thursday, 28 June 2012

Study Centre for Scenic Arts

Have a look at this, regards Patrick at

Maria Harman []
22 June 2012 19:03
Dear Friends and Colleagues,
This is to let you know that the Study Centre for Scenic Arts (SCSA) has posted a cluster of filmed interviews with prominent names in contemporary scenography. Please take a moment to peruse our Stagecraft and Lectures pages at: where you will find exclusive interviews shot during the events we organised in Europe from 2008 to 2011. New videos will be posted every month while we generate an archive accessible to all.
The Study Centre is committed to generating a database of AV documentation and other material on contemporary scenography and related subjects, to be made available to academics, teaching staff, students and postgraduates, industry professionals, creative and technical minds alike.
I'd like to remind you that the Study Centre has opened the registration for membership. We already count almost 200 SCSA members and we hope that you, too will consider membership if you have not already signed up. Benefits include free entry to events and discounts on selected items. Check the Members' Space on our web site for details.
If you would like to be involved in our activities or collaborate with the Centre, as a signed-up SCSA member, we invite you to put your name forward to join our Scientific Committee. Details can be found on our web site.
Don't forget - our upcoming conference on contemporary scenography and scenic architecture takes place in Bologna from 17 to 21 October. You'll find event details, programme, updates and registration forms at:!training
Thank you for your time and we hope to see you in Bologna later this year.
Maria Harman
IFSArts /SCSA co-director
Tel. +39.(0)763.341667
Italy cell. +39.347.4390813

Monday, 18 June 2012

Rough Magic’s “Travesties”

Rough Magic’s “Travesties” at the Pavilion Theatre, Dún Laoghaire

Last night (Saturday 16th June) I saw Rough Magic’s  production of Tom Stoppard’s “Travesties” at the Pavilion Theatre, Dún Laoghaire

Costume Design by Bláithín Sheeran

Lighting Design by Sinéad McKenna.


The realisation of Lynne Parker’s concept for the set is a multifaceted well thought out piece of scenography and examples the potential of possibility that can manifest from the close collaborative engagement between Director and Designer(s); in this case Director and Set Designer being one and the same person.  

While the whole performance space is ensconced in a dressed black limbo, it is subdivided into a number of smaller dressed and lit acting spaces by a large island set piece consisting of a large diagonally positioned rectangular, raked rostrum rising from +500mm on the downstage/onstage edge to +1000mm on the upstage/stage left edge. The rostrum accommodates a vertical double door entrance/exit positioned on a smaller, level rostrum inset upstage on the raked rostrum. The frame of the double doors is surmounted by a large circular rose pattern fanlight, which apart from its symbolism, when it is lit from above it acts as a gobo casting a central hub and spoked pattern onto the rostrum top and stage floor. The upstage +1000mm edge of the rostrum acts as a writing/counter top, the onstage edge as a sideboard and the downstage edge as a step/seat. It affords interesting patterns of movement and positioning for the performers.

The downstage left corner is symbolically dressed with some large scientific instruments (and a baseball bat) appropriate to the period. Whereas the down stage right side, while also symbolically dressed, also has an (narrators) armchair, side table (draped with a Union Jack) reading lights and a rocking (Hobby) horse. Up stage right accommodates layers of written words on transparent plastic curtains which form a chicane or maze of words through which characters can hide from each other, miss each other and/or enter/exit upstage right through a backlit door. Up stage, centre back is a high chrominance back lit projection screen which, on occasion has shadows of down stage items projected onto it.

The real magic of the set is the double doors through which characters appear and disappear in the “Harry Potter” mode of travel. It forms a portal, a magic wardrobe portal to and from another place, not only for the appearance/disappearance of the characters but also for the physic of the audience to follow and join the characters in different places.  The illusion is well supported by a nifty piece of theatrical stage craft.

Lighting Designer Sinéad McKenna, as can be expected, enhanced the ambience and atmosphere of the presentation and augmented the dramatic moments with her deft lighting. To me, the low angled up light effect of the “Foot Lights” on the floor at the apron edge added to the period and theatrical presentation of the work.

Bláithín Sheeran’s Costume Designs lend credibility to the characters portrayed and enhances their assessment of self, their social standing, occupation and sets them in a time and place. The collaboration between Bláithín Sheeran, Costume Designer and Hair and Make-Up Designers Catherine Argue and Val Sherlock gave good supportive visual impact and expression to the characters.

A lot for students of Design for Stage, Screen and Performance to see and ponder in this production
Showing from: June 7th to 23rd at 8pm.
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Patrick Molloy for

Friday, 15 June 2012

“Travesties” at the Pavilion Theatre

Tomorrow evening (Saturday 16th June) am looking forward to seeing Rough Magic's  production of Tom Stoppard’s “Travesties” at the Pavilion Theatre, Dún Laoghaire Directed by Lynn Parker, Costume Design by Scenographer Bláithín Sheeran  and Lighting Design is by Sinéad McKenna.

Showing from: June 7th to 23rd at 8pm.

I will post comments/impressions on Set, Costume & Lighting Design over the weekend.

Patrick Molloy for

Monday, 4 June 2012

The Country Girls

The Country Girls

Last Thursday night (Thursday 31st May) I saw Edna O' Brien's stage play "The Country Girls" at the Gaiety Theatre Dublin. The Country Girls (set in the 1950s) was first published in 1960 as a book and premiered as a stage play at Garter Lane Theatre, Waterford, in October 2011, produced by Red Kettle Theatre Company in association with Garter Lane Arts Centre, Waterford, Ireland 

The Set was designed by Ben Hennessy. Ben is a Founder Member and Artistic Director of Red Kettle. He works as a director, designer, writer and painter and in this instance; he brings a painterly quality to his scenographic interpretation for this traveling set for The Country Girls. While the script’s author Ms. Edna O’Brien is quite prescriptive on how the stage is set and to an extent how it looks (a touch of Beckett), Ben Hennessy’s solution satisfies the needs of a traveling set for a travelling show on a restricted budget at the expense of a more enhancing solution.  

A painted curved backcloth, a painted floor cloth and four masking pieces of hanging gauze masking the wings, define the performance space and are the constant environment in which the play unfolds.  

The painted curved backcloth and the painted floor cloth are both painted in broad strokes in tones of white to dark grey (a la Sean Scully-esque). A useful technique whereby the lighter paint tones pick up and reflect any coloured light used by the Lighting Designer (Conleth White) to accentuate a dramatic moment, an atmosphere, an emotional moment or place, etc. 

The hanging legs of Gauze/Muslin masking the wings also pick up the ambient light and one is used in the traditional way to hide & reveal a statue.

Up stage left and right are what appear to be two steel tube scaffold platforms with steps. These constructions also remain on stage throughout the two Acts of the play. They work at indicating an upstairs first floor in Kate’s home and as Pulpit in the Convent, and Gang Planks in the closing scene,

The only visual contribution to establishing the period in which the story is set comes from the Costume Designer Léonore McDonagh. Through her Costume Designs, Léonore McDonagh establishes the characters, their age, their gender, their socio-economic standing, occupation and their demographic and contributes hugely to establishing the where and when of the play.

Foot notes:

The action piece of hanging of clothes on a manually held cloths line was an effective and visually appealing solution to a piece of action. 

The small down stage left, boxed in flowerbed while giving a sense of exterior, becomes utilitarian when Sister Mary buries Kate’s copy of Joyce’s Dubliners.   

The script mentions a “feather Christmas tree” action prop for the Christmas holidays scene which I must have missed because the scene could have done with it. While the snow effect lighting supported the seasonal ambience a small Christmas tree would have clinched it. 

It is a useful set, if on the drab side of the solution. See the play and see what you think of the Set, the Lighting and the Costumes and how they all work to support the script.   

Tour of Ireland 2012:
Dean Crowe Theatre, Athlone
Monday 4th June –Tuesday 5th June

Glór, Ennis
Wednesday 6th June – Thursday 7th June

Hawk’s Well Theatre, Sligo
Friday 8th June – Saturday 9th June

Cork Opera House
Monday 11th June – Saturday 16th June

Town Hall Theatre, Galway
Monday 18th June – Saturday 23rd June