A set design communicates lots of information to an audience, and provides the physical world in which a performance takes place. In his book The Dramatic Imagination, the great set designer Robert Edmond Jones wrote: “…we may fairly speak of the art of stage designing as poetic, in that it seeks to give expression to the essential quality of a play rather than to its outward characteristics.” Students in this course will work through the process of designing stage sets in which poetic expression is evident. Basic design principles and conceptualization, play analysis, theatrical style, research, drafting by hand on a computer, and model making will all be covered. The collaborative process as an integral part of theatrical design will also be addressed. Over the semester several projects will be assigned; students will be expected to read each of the plays and respond with various types of visual images, including research, sketches, plans and models. At least one distinguished guest director will visit to view and discuss student work generated in this course. Although design for live performance will be the focus, this class will be useful for students shaping space in other media.
Corequisites: Dance or Drama lab assignment