Carmen

  • Grange Festival Opera, Grange Park, 2017

Carmen seen through the veiled membrane of the crow’s eye view. Enveloping the stage, the black and iridescent screen surface made of shawls was projected on using filmed footage developed from custom made paint bowls and other painted mirror surfaces. The surface was designed and constructed from shawls by Joanna Parker and developed for use as a screen by Dick Straker in order to represent multiple aspects of the symbolism within the piece. It was filmed during construction and other filmed elements were created to work with the unique qualities of the surface.

Annabel Arden directed this production with a strong perspective including narrating the story, character relationships and especially Carmen’s role within it. The projection becomes part of this narration as the stage design is stripped away to reveal Carmen’s dilemma.

Video designs of birds by Dick Straker morph from phoenix to feathers, doves to a wing. The colours change from bright Van Goghs to dusky monochrome, as vivid as Bizet’s orchestration
Rebecca Franks - The Times