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A Kettle of Fish


by Brad Birch. 

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A Kettle of Fish


by Brad Birch. 

A Kettle of Fish- by Brad Birch at The Yard//Direction: Caitlin McLeod//Design: Ingrid Hu//Composition and Sound: Max Pappenhiem//Video: Tegid Cartwright//Stage Manager on book: Devika Ramcharan//ASM:Isobel Eagle-Wilsher//Production Manager: Seb Cannings//Production Electrician: Alex Ramesden//Production Photography: Helen Murray.

 

She’s on a plane. She’s 30,000 feet in the air. And on the ground, back home, an emergency is unfolding.

Lisa is on her way to a new country for her work. She has spent months learning. She’s read the books, she’s watched the YouTube videos. She knows this business.

But something has happened thousands of feet below, hundreds of miles away. A disaster. A tragedy. Something that prompts her to question what is more important to her; where she has come from? Or where she is going?
 

Have a look at the process of designing A Kettle of Fish on my blog.
Where you can also look at some of the reference imagery from this production.

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Trap Street


by James Yeatman and Lauren Mooney.

 

Trap Street


by James Yeatman and Lauren Mooney.

 

Trap Street - Kandisnsky at The New Diorama//Direction: James Yeatman//Co Designers: Joshua Gadsby and Naomi Kuyck-Cohen//Composition: Zac Gvirtzman//Devised With The Company: Amelda Brown, Danusia Samal, Hamish MacDougall//Stage Manager: Elenor Dear//Producer: Lauren Mooney//Photography: Richard Davenport.

 

It’s 1961 and the concrete’s just been poured for a brand new housing estate. It’s beautiful, not because of the clean lines, indoor toilets and wide windows, but because the idea behind it is beautiful. This is the future, and it’s for everyone. It’s 2018 and the last tower of the estate is about to come down. The dream that saw it built has long since died and now the estate has to follow suit to make way for new buildings, based on new ideas. This is the future, whether you like it or not. 
 

In our second co-design, Naomi and I set out on a journey of creating some sort of monolithic monument to brutalism without succumbing to the sexy and visually overwhelming world of concrete-loving. Carving out a space to tell an intergenerational story of working class desire, hopes, dreams, and failure in relation to where we choose to call home. The challenge was to find the ambiguous sweet spot that allowed us to not cast comment and judgement.

 
This is a timely critique of both the flawed utopianism of the Sixties and the chimera of ‘affordable housing’. Angry yet humane, it’s intended not as a definitive statement about the fraying of urban communities, but as a spur for further debate.
— ★★★★ Evening Standard
 
So intricate and subtle, not to mention enjoyable, that it takes a while before you realise your blood pressure has been rising because the housing system is so utterly fucked. The huge amount of research that has clearly gone into the show is made human, as it looks at the (im)possibility of sustaining a sense of community in close-quarters living.
— ★★★★ - TimeOut
Trap Street slips between these two time-periods seamlessly throughout, slotting in documentary snippets and small skits around the edges, and somehow managing to squeeze the entire history of post-war housing into one show. In the tale of a collapsing tower block, Kandinsky find a potent symbol for the fraying fabric of our society. This compelling, compact show is not overtly political.
— ★★★★ The Stage
 
That’s where Trap Street is most successful and most moving. Dreams mothers have for their children, visions of modernity, hopes for upward mobility and aspirations for community are all explored. It examines not just the act of dreaming, but the difficulty in reconciling our dreams with reality, including their shortcomings and enduring effects. Regardless of whether they are true or realized, dreams are like trap streets, etched into existence. Right up to its Jane Austen allusions, there in the background all along, Trap Street effectively maps the process of British dreaming, and how that process is permanently written into the landscape itself.
— Exeunt Magazine
Designers Joshua Gadsby and Naomi Kuyck-Cohen provide a plain white angular space for the modernist home that Andrea ultimately chooses to fight for, placed in front of an ironic backcloth showing a palatial mansion in rolling hills. Does it just pick up on the reference to the Pemberley House of Austen’s Pride And Prejudice or is it saying that good housing has always been the preserve of those that can afford it.

It makes for a smart and witty backdrop to a wonderfully subtle, un-preachy but inherently political play that ultimately tells us we have the housing crisis we have brought down on our own heads. And it’s time we did something about it.
— British Theatre Guide
 
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Returning To Haifa


by Ismail Khalidi and Naomi Wallace, based on the novella by Ghassan Kanafani.

Returning To Haifa


by Ismail Khalidi and Naomi Wallace, based on the novella by Ghassan Kanafani.

Returning to Haifa - At The Finborough Theatre

Direction:Caitlin McLeod
Design:Rosie Elnile
Light:Joshua Gadsby
Sound: David Gregory
Movement Direction: Lanre Malaolu

Producer: Lynne McConway
Production Manager: Ben Karakashian
Photography: Scott Rylander

 

“You haven’t asked, but yes, you both may stay in our house for the time being. And use our things. 
I figure it’ll take a war to settle it all.”

In 1948, Palestinian couple Said and Safiyya fled their home during the Nakba.
Now, in the aftermath of the 1967 Six Day War, the borders are open for the first time in twenty years,
and the couple dare to return back to their home in Haifa. They are prepared – of course – to find someone else living where they once did.
Yet nothing could prepare Said and Safyya for the encounter they both desire and dread: the son they had to leave behind,
and what he has now become…

Amongst Rosie Elnile’s open spacial proposition light provides a democratic and un-assuming space for the journey to unfold.  

★★★★ The Guardian
★★★★ WhatsOnStage
★★★★ The Upcoming

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dreamplay


by Sarah Bedi after Strindberg.
 

dreamplay


by Sarah Bedi after Strindberg.
 

 

 

Dreamplay - Baz Productions at The Vaults
by Sarah Bedi and The Company, after Strindberg. 

 Direction: Sarah Bedi
Dramturgy: Emma Luffingham
Scenographers: Naomi Kuyck-Cohen & Joshua Gadsby
Music: Laura Moody
Choreography: Ffion Cox-Davies

The Company:
Colin Hurley
Michelle Luther
Laura Moody
Jade Ogugua
 

Stage Manager: Libby Spencer
Producer: Georgina Bednar
Associate Producers: Liz Counsell & Catherine Baliey
Production Electricians: Dom Cook,  Jack Berry, Phil Burke, Lara Davison & Robbie Butler
Design Assistants: Alice Cousins, Jessica Skyes, Sasha Tanvi Marni, Alex Purvis & Rebecca Hallen
Costume Supervisors: Rosemary Maltezos & Lia Webber
Construction: Felix Gillies-Creasey, Grace Craven, Harley Kuyck-Cohen & Sebastian Cannings


Photography: Cesare De Giglio

 

Strindberg's epic play 'A Dream Play' is reimagined in a new contemporary devised production. I co-designed this production with
Naomi Kuyck-Cohen, in an attempt to explore what happens when you remove the boundaries in design roles. 

We enjoyed a long process of interrogation with director Sarah Bedi before the production was taken into rehearsals. It was imperative for us that the visual design of Dreamplay didn't distract too far from the extremely vibrant talents of the playful and energetic cast.
Working to embrace the cavernous, characterful and sometimes absurd Vaults we set about a language of directness and simplicity.

A special thanks to: Sparks, Hampstead Theatre & Arcola Theatre. 


Head over to my blog to hear more about the process of designing this production.  
Naomi Kuyck-Cohen lays out some fantastic visual documentation from our process here.

Naomi Kuyck-Cohen and Joshua Gadsby’s set is phenomenal, almost art rather than a set, and they use The Vaults to it’s full potential. The diversity of the set and the way it was tailored to each scene was the very foundation of the show.
— West End Wilma
dreamplay’s sequence of disjointed scenarios is abstruse yet provocatively familiar, at times mischievously amusing, at others deeply discomforting.
— The Stage
This reimagining feels like a presentation of the original fever dream as might have been experienced by Strindberg himself. Here the audience becomes Agnes as they descend into the depths of The Vaults.
— The Upcoming
Crammed with memorable snippets, this ambitious adaptation is free enough to pin down the theme precisely. And if it’s deep meaningful questions you like, these are packed in with forceful proficiency.
— Once A Week Theatre
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1972: The Future of Sex


by The Wardrobe Ensemble.

1972: The Future of Sex


by The Wardrobe Ensemble.

1972: The Future of Sex -ArtsEd//Direction: Liz Bacon//Design: Georgia De Grey//Sound: Phil Bell//DSM: Ella Stewart.

 

THIS IS IT! 1972! Sex is rampant and around every corner and the kids are saying yes! Yes! Yes! The contraceptive pill is available, David Bowie is on Top of the Pops and women’s rights are having a moment. The young know what it means to be alive and everyone is groovy… Except for Brian. In 1972, Brian is confused. Christine is watching Deep Throat, and Anna is falling for a woman. And Anton? Anton struggles to leave his bedroom.
 

Head over to my blog to see reference imagery for this production.   

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The Three Sisters


by Anton Chekov in a translation by Mike Alfreds. 

The Three Sisters


by Anton Chekov in a translation by Mike Alfreds. 

The Three Sisters  for Royal Central School of Speech & Drama//Direction: Mike Alfreds//Design: Max Dorey//Sound: Lex Kosanke////Stage Manager:Dougie Wilson//Deputy Stage Manager:Emma Ryan//Photography: Patrick Baldwin.

 

Chekhov’s tragi-comedy The Three Sisters, is set at the turn of the last century in an unspecified provincial town, possibly Perm in the Urals, some thousand miles east of Moscow.

Over a period of about four years the play deals with the complicated relationships between a household and some soldiers from an artillery brigade based in the town.

In the characters’ search for a purpose in life and a place to belong, they are constantly buffeted by the changing circumstances of their existence.
 

This production presented another opportunity to really push the boundaries of how we might tell a story with light. Set on an almost entirely bare stage the company use a range of rehearsal props to inhabit the story in the now. It was exciting to get back to form which acknowledged the act of creating a performance--as such light had to be able to fit a rehearsal aesthetic whilst also providing pace and spacial dynamic. My personal enquiry was concerned with how once might create naturalism without any architectural assistance.

Head over to my blog to see reference imagery for this production.   

 
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The Laramie Project


by Moises Kaufman and The Tectonic Theatre Group.

The Laramie Project


by Moises Kaufman and The Tectonic Theatre Group.

1972: The Future of Sex -ArtsEd//Direction: Holly Race Roughan//Design: Georgia De Grey//Sound: Phil Bell//DSM: Ella Stewart.

 

n October 6th of 1998, Matthew Shepard was beaten and left to die tied to a fence in the outskirts of Laramie, Wyoming. He died 6 days later. His torture and murder became a watershed historical moment in America that highlighted many of the fault lines in our culture.
A month after the murder, the members of Tectonic Theater Project travelled to Laramie and conducted interviews with the people of the town. From these interviews they wrote the play The Laramie Project.
 
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Still Ill


by Al Smith, Lauren Mooney and James Yeatman.

 

Still Ill


by Al Smith, Lauren Mooney and James Yeatman.

 

Still Ill - Kandisnsky at The New Diorama

 Direction: James Yeatman
Lighting Design: Joshua Gadsby

Video Design: Harry Yeatman
Composition: Zac Gvi


Devised With The Company:
Sophie Steer
Hamish MacDougall
Harriet Webb

Stage Manager: Maia Alvarez Stratford
Producer: Lauren Mooney

Photography: David Monteith - Hodge

How does it feel to be told there is nothing physically wrong with you, when your brain tells you you're sick?
Still Ill Explores FND (Functional Neurological Disorder) a condition that is as common on
neurology wards as MS. 


Playful, funny, eloquent and emotionally devastating. It's the closest I've ever got to my pipe dream
of work that plays with form and theatricality and still allows room
for heart-clenching emotional honesty.

 

An intricately-layered, exquisitely detailed piece from rising stars Kandinsky
— ★★★★ - TimeOut
Fascinating, layered, intelligent
— ★★★★ The Stage
A sophisticated, intriguing and enlightening production
— ★★★★ London Theatre1
Brilliantly crafted, exacting, and endlessly inventive, Still Ill is a complex and meticulous journey into the world of undiagnosis
— Exeunt Magazine
Breathtaking stuff… an enormously affecting bit of theatre
— ★★★★★ London City Nights
Still Ill doesn’t attempt explanations—there are none—but shows just what it’s like.....Kandinsky show how it feels. Still Ill demands our tolerance and understanding.
— British Theatre Guide
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The Devils


by John Whiting, from a book by Aldous Huxley

 

The Devils


by John Whiting, from a book by Aldous Huxley

 

The Devils  for Royal Central School of Speech and Drama.//Direction: JBen Naylor and Anna Healy// Designer: Max Dorey//Lighting:Joshua Gadsby//Sound: Dan Balfour///Photography: Patrick Baldwin.

 

Originally commissioned for the RSC’s first season in 1961, John Whiting’s dramatisation of Aldous Huxley’s historical novel The Devils of Loudun was itself later adapted by Ken Russell into one of the most shocking and controversial films of the 1970s.
 

In 'The Devils' an epic hour and forty five minutes relentlessly unfolded in to form a horrific painting of the depths of human depravity. Endlessly shifting and moving, me aimed to constantly reframe the sparce empty space. 

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The Leftovers.


by Nic Harvey and Rob Green

The Leftovers.


by Nic Harvey and Rob Green

The Leftovers- Sheep Soup Productions at Curve Studio, Leicester.
Book by Nic Harvey
Music by Rob Green.


 Direction: Siobhan Cannon-Brownlie
Design: Lizzy Leech
Lighting Design: Joshua Gadsby



Producer: Tom Barnes
Photography: Pamela Raith

 

Following the sudden death of Jodie, occasional gig reviewer and the definition of misadventure,
some of her friends join forces in a Nottingham recording studio. Local singer-songwriter Hayley has penned a memorial song for Jodie,
but the makeshift band can’t seem to agree on what their late friend would have wanted from a musical tribute.
Are they here to pay their respects or to alleviate their guilt? Or is this just an intense form of music therapy? 


In 'The Leftovers' the music playfully rises out of the collective scramble to find the best way to commemorate a lost friend. 
Leftovers was a diegetic musical, and it was important for light not to compromise the organic and naturalistic origins.
Light gently contracted and expanded supporting the playful musical discoveries as they unfolded, but never enforced its own stylistic agenda.    

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Alligators


by Andrew Keatley.

Alligators


by Andrew Keatley.

 

 

Alligators - Hampstead Theatre, Downstairs
by Andrew Keatley


 Direction: Simon Evans
Set Design: 
Polly Sullivan
Sound Design and Composition: Ed Lewis

Photography: Robert Day

 

Secondary schoolteacher Daniel Turner has been accused of the historical sexual abuse of a student. In Andrew Keatley's  thriller, audiences are  shown the impact of criminal allegations on a small family. But the question remains...did he do it? 

In Polly Sullivan's traverse staged living room - cum - jury stand the hyper realism guides and misleads the audience.

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A Midsummer Night's Dream


by William Shakespere

 

A Midsummer Night's Dream


by William Shakespere

 

A Midsummer Night's Dream - For Royal Central, MA Acting Classical at The Webber Douglas

 Direction: Stephen Hudson
Scenography: Andreas Skourtis
Lighting Design: Joshua Gadsby
Sound Design: Joe Dines
Movement Director Ingrid Mackinnon
Associate Director: Tricia Hitchcock
Assistant Designer: Vivianna Chiotini


Production Manager: Vivienne Clavering
SM: Fiona Kennedy
DSM: Louise Brown


Production Photography: Robert Day
Documentary Photography: Andreas Skourtis 

Athens – defined by its relationship to law, war and the patriarchy that rules it.
Four lovers flee the city in order to find what they believe will bring them happiness and become lost in a forest:
a place where inhibition and convention are shredded and where nothing is what it appears to be;
a place where they discover that living outside of the society that has moulded them can bring more than they bargained for.

Head over to my blog to see reference imagery for this production.  

 

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The Sound & The Fury


Devised and performed by students from BA (Hons) Acting Collaborative and Devised Theatre with students from BA (Hons) Theatre Practice from the novel by William Faulkner

The Sound & The Fury


Devised and performed by students from BA (Hons) Acting Collaborative and Devised Theatre with students from BA (Hons) Theatre Practice from the novel by William Faulkner

The Sound & The Fury  for Royal Central School of Speech & Drama - ACTING CDT at The Pleasance Theatre.
Direction: Sasha Milivic Davies//Design: Delphine Jaquess//Sound: Vili Chaushev////Stage Manager:Gemma Davies-Starr//Deputy Stage Manager:Kathryn Sanders//Assistant Stage Managers:Millie Mack, Charlotte Owen//Co-Production Sound Engineers: Sam Aimson, Beth Duke, Will Thompson//Production Manager:Jack Boissieux//Cheif Electrician: Tom Courtier//Photography:Patrick Baldwin.

 

This classic novel set in Mississippi in the first quarter of the of the 20th century traces the decline of the once aristocratic Compson family. The tale is narrated by the three Compson brothers: an idiot, an academic and an embezzler and the family servant, Dilsey Gibson.

This is a story for our times about frustrated identity and the power struggle between men and women. William Faulkner’s richly textured writing weaves together luscious fragments of imagery and compelling characters, inspiring this subtle and beautiful theatrical portrait of a decaying family.
 

 

The inquiry behind this design was to try and stage the anarchy and discord of frantic, messy youth cultures. ‘The Sound & The Fury’ is a fragmented crazed storytelling experience. It’s form is fluid and through a non-chronological timeline you come to understand. This journey of piecing together was of great importance for me. I was inspired by the fragmentary nature of the storytelling experience—This paired with the influences of the white trash America of Harmony Korine’s work, and the flatness of light and stage images in much of eastern European theatre, led to the perusal of a lighting language that dared to be ugly and rough around the edges. The telling of this story felt like a little bit of a rebellion, so therefore I too had to rebel against the revived wisdom is self indulgent clean high contrast theatrical lighting. 

Head over to my blog to see reference imagery for this production.  

 
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Airswimming


by Charlotte Jones.

Airswimming


by Charlotte Jones.

 

 

Airswimming - NewPlay Productions at The Vaults
by Charlotte Jones


 Direction: Anthony Skuse
Design:
Becky Dee Trevenen
Sound Design : John McLeod


Photography: Ed Miller 

 

Airswimming is the delicate story of two women consigned to a hospital for the criminally insane for baring illegitimate children.
Devastating and uplifting in equal measure the story tracks over fifty years and explores
what it is to find companionship when all others have left you behind. 

...The result is a beautifully simple, non linear, two hander that is both tragic and funny ... a well rounded and eerie experience as well as an evening of true skill and artistry
— ★★★★ West End Wilma
Stark messages in the material are reflected in Becky-Dee Trevenen’s set and costume design, with the lighting from Joshua Gadsby and sound from Jon McLeod coming together perfectly to create moods of intimacy, of danger and of discomfort.
— ★★★★ Review Hub
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Consensual


by Evan Placey.

 

Consensual


by Evan Placey.

 

Consensual with Nuffield Youth Theatre
at Nuffield Southampton Theatres


 Direction: Max Lindsay
Design: Samuel Wilde
Lighting Design: Joshua Gadsby

Sound Design: Charlie Brown

Stage Manager: Rhea Williams

Photography: Richard Budd

What happens when buried secrets catch up with you?
Freddie used to be Diane’s student, and her lover.
The truth about their relationships is about to explode.  In the wreckage that follows,
everything unravels and they are forced to confront what happened seven years ago.

Nuffield Youth Theatre's production of Evan Placey's heady exploration of teenagers,
consent and living with the weight of secrets was a fast moving raucous event. 

 

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Mary Stuart


by Ben Naylor after Schiller.

Mary Stuart


by Ben Naylor after Schiller.

 

 

Mary Stuart - Royal Central School of Speech & Drama
for MA Acting Classical.

Adaption and Direction: Ben Naylor
Associate Directors: Iraz Chamami and Anna Healey
Set Design: Max Dorey
Costume Design:
 Chantelle Gerrard
Sound Design: David Hermann
Lighting Design: Joshua Gadsby

Photography: Patrick Baldwin

 

Politics, faith and principle collide in Schiller’s extraordinary 1800 tragedy,
which pits Elizabeth I against her imprisoned rival and cousin Mary, Queen of Scots.
This intense and subtle psycho-drama, with Shakespearean overtones,
is without doubt one of the great classics of German, and indeed European, theatre.

 

Staged in Max Dorey's sparse and architectural set , light had fantastic a fantastic opportunity to play with scale and direction.

Read more about the production here