In the move from the rehearsal room into the theater last week, we've been thinking back to what the designers presented at the Meet & Greet of their ideas for the physical production of THE WHO & THE WHAT - which just started performances!
Jack Magaw (Set Designer) has been researching Islamic window screens - an architectural structure that has a masking quality that has similarities to the hijab (veil) worn by many women of Islamic faith. Look out for screens on the set of this production.
Sound Designer Jill DuBoff's lively transition music between scenes will follow the movement of large shifting units on the set. She also plans on including Medhi Hassan ghazals (a poetic form of song, popular in South Asia), which are a favorite of Zarina's father in Ayad's play.
Japhy Weideman (Lighting Designer) will also take his cue from the set, finding ways to activate the appropriate square unit at the appropriate time, and using light to keep the focus on the action in any given scene. Inspired by Arabic installation art shimmering glass pieces, the set design also calls for hanging light bulbs. Japhy thinks of the bulbs as a kind of energy that lives above the world of the play, which helps bridge the scenes through transitions.
When discussing the clothes for this production, Costume Designer Emily Rebholz talks a lot about the specific personalities and values of the characters, and how there are notes of multiple cultures in each of them. For example, Eli (played by Greg Keller) is a community organizer, a respectful imam, AND a practical plumber - he can do many things while in a single outfit. During technical rehearsals and previews, the team fine-tunes how each element helps the play move from scene to scene. Check back soon for more about THE WHO & THE WHAT.
Natasha Sinha is the LCT3 Associate.