WSD 2013 brings stage designers to Cardiff

The UK will host World Stage Design for the first time this year, with the 10-day festival of performance design taking place in Cardiff from 5-15 September.

WSD 2013 organisers received more than 600 international submissions from set, costume, lighting and sound designers vying to have their work showcased at the event’s free exhibition.

Project leader Sean Crowley said: ‘The scale of global interest in World Stage Design 2013 in Cardiff has been beyond our expectations.’

The 100 finalists include Olivier and Tony Award-winning Richard Hudson (UK) whose credits include sets and costumes for the Royal Danish Ballet, Royal Opera House, Royal Shakespeare Company and The Lion King; Marie-Jeanne Lecca (Romania), the costume designer for Welsh National Opera’s Lulu; RSC’s associate designer Tom Piper (UK) and Jean-Marc Puissant (France) who works on theatre, opera and dance shows around the world.

Crowley said: ‘We are especially pleased that the final list contains representatives from five continents and includes many younger designers working on smaller productions as well as more established designers. This ensures that exhibition visitors will get to see a highly diverse, inspirational and truly international range of approaches.’

Exhibits at the Linbury Gallery and Bute Theatre will include original costumes, scale set models, design sketches and production photographs alongside original props and interactive sound and lighting installations.

As well as the exhibition, a series of performances, workshops and talks are on offer, including a special effects workshop by Colin Arthur (Never Ending Story, A Space Odyssey) and costume events led by experts from the V&A Museum and including contributors such as Oscar-winning costume designer Sandy Powell, and leading costume designer Vin Burnham (Batman Returns, Lady Gaga).

WSD will also present the winner of its ‘Sustainable Theatre’ contest, which challenged designers to create an innovative venue using sustainable materials. The winning entry will be built and used as a major venue for performances, presentations and workshops during WSD 2013.

WSD 2013 is hosted by the Royal Welsh College of Music & Drama, with support from the Welsh Government; the International Organisation for Scenographers, Theatre Architects and Technicians); the Ministry of Culture Taiwan; and the Society of British Theatre Designers.

WSD takes place every four years; previous host cities have included Toronto and Seoul.

Photo: The Royal Ballet’s Aeternum. Set and costume design by Jean Marc Puissant.
© Ivor Kerslake