OTHELLO

CONCEPTUAL SET AND

COSTUME DESIGN

Richard Burton Theatre

RWCMD

Written by William Shakespeare

Visualizing Shakespeare's tragedy in 16th C. feudal Japan, where the fragile hierarchy of the samurai system frames well Othello's rise in power and his eventual fall, the ruling power of honour being paramount in this society.

Layers of paper screens conceal and reveal, moving and slicing through the stage space. Characters are highlighted in silhouettes and shadows, heightening the sense of watching and being watched, which intensifies with Othello's paranoia. The system of screens expands and contacts between scenes, allowing for tight intimate chambers as well as broad public spaces. They define thresholds between buildings, corridors of light acting as dim streets, playing on the depths of intrigue, falsehood and twisted truth constructed by Iago.