THE TEMPEST

SHAKESPEARE

PAPER PROJECT

(UNIVERSITY THEATER)

For this class project, I envisioned the audience entering onto the stage of the University Theater from the fire exits. There is a circle of chairs for audience members on the stage. The stagehouse is stripped to expose its brick walls, and the regular auditorium seats are covered in clear plastic sheeting. Except for entrance aisles, the area behind the audience seating is also covered in clear plastic. When the audience enters the space, the playing area is covered in black plastic sheeting, gathered at the edges. This is the ship. There are two white ladders that emerge from a semi-circular trap. As the storm at the top of the show begins, the clear plastic over the auditorium seats billows and heaves as the waves, a clear plastic curtain in fullness becomes the rain, and ladders with deckhands descend from the flies. As the ship sinks, the black plastic and the "rain" curtain are pulled into the semicircular trap. The stage is revealed to be painted a rough white, and chalk-drawn equations, astrological maps and sigils are drawn on some of the walls of the stagehouse. The stage becomes the island, the auditorium becomes the sea. A niche SL is piled high with books; this is Prospero's cell. Ariel, while invisible, hangs off a flying ladder that tracks SL-SR at his will.