From the pen of guest blogger, set designer and fx-wiz Jane Murphy


November 20, 2012 by wandalusst

By what happy stroke of luck have I managed to land in this room, bursting with talent and passion?

Unfortunately, I do not have a minute to devote to answering this question!  I am too busy impersonating a Set Designer….

As I enter the final week of the TTFO creative development process, the rehearsal room is littered with cardboard filing boxes –  I have decided to go for simple, recyclable readily accessible materials as our core scenic element.

Today we have added various bits of hospital furniture. The venetian blinds are shut- blocking out the 30 degree day.

Actors are buzzing around- popping behind screens and reappearing as outlandish characters, as the costume designer creates wonders with multiple white gloves and medical masks.

The lighting designer controls the theatre spotlights and the projector beams- throwing fabulous shadows and images across our cardboard ‘set’ and onto the massively tall walls of the North Melbourne Arts House. The scale is huge and yet it is also very intimate.

The musical director leads the choir into a frenzy of maniacal paper-making mime, and the musical con-sort swagger with their instruments in their 5-o’clock-shadow face paint.

The directors are alternatively jumping in to lead the fray or collapsing into uncontrollable laughter.

This surge of creative juices flow together to create a tsunami of invention and hilarity as TTFO starts to morph and reveal its elusive physical shape.

We mark out and feel the space.

Can we skip comfortably between the columns? Will the projected images reach beyond the grand chandeliers to the vaulted Victorian ceiling?   Will there be enough room for an audience? How to light such a monster, with such limited resources, and so few powerpoints?

In amongst the chaos, a big picture forms- loose enough to still remain flexible, but firm enough to send us all away with lots of homework…..

Oh what jolly fun it is, and what a luxury to have had this time playing together!!

3 thoughts on “From the pen of guest blogger, set designer and fx-wiz Jane Murphy

  1. veepas says:

    Many words repeat throughout the blog entries – creativity, talent, fun, laughter…
    It’s a whopper of a production and one we all believe in passionately.
    By the way, Jane is also an ace helicopter pilot!
    Is there no end to this woman’s abilities???

  2. petawilliams says:

    Aaahh…. impersonating a set designer seems to be your forte, Jane! The creative team of lighting, set and costume design seems to be a wondrous, imaginative and magical thing… more power to your individual and collective elbow! Peta W

  3. sarahardy2012 says:

    Those boxes were an inspirational creative tool/prop/concept… And such fun to play with. Jane, you’re just going to have to accept that you’re a set designer!!!

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