April 2019 Faculty Projects

Tuesday, Apr 2, 2019

Jason Ardizzone-West is designing the new Blue Man Group national tour opening in Los Angeles in September; the world premiere of The Michaels, written & directed by Richard Nelson, opening at The Public Theater in October (Susan Hilferty, costume design); Once on this Island, directed by Robert Barry Fleming, opening at the Cincinnati Playhouse in September; Native Gardens, directed by Robert Barry Fleming, opening at the Cleveland Playhouse in May, and a few other projects that are not yet announced.

Brett J. Banakis is continuing design work on a new Sherlock Holmes play at the Geffen Playhouse called Mysterious Circumstances, based on a New Yorker article of the same name. Brett is continuing work as International Scenic Supervisor on all worldwide productions of Harry Potter and the Cursed Child, with set design by Christine Jones ‘92, in Melbourne, Australia; Hamburg, Germany; and San Francisco. Currently running: The Cher Show at the Neil Simon Theatre (co-design with Christine Jones ‘92), and The Enigmatist, a one-man Magic/Puzzles/Prestidigitation show, starring David Kwong, at the High Line Hotel in Chelsea.

M.L. Geiger is designing Until the Flood, by and starring Dael Orlandersmyth, which is running at Portland Center Stage in Oregon. She is also designing Amber Waves, a play with music about the farm crisis, directed by Lisa Rothe (NYU grad acting), which opens April 4th at Indiana Rep. 

Paul Hackenmueller is currently beginning production on Carmen at Seattle Opera with Paul Curran and scenic designer Gary McCann. Spring commercial work includes designing multiple international meetings for Radisson Hotel Group and multiple productions for Target Corporation across the US and Asia.

Susan Hilferty is currently designing sets and costumes for The Oresteia written by Ellen McLaughlin and directed by Michael Kahn as his final production as artistic director of the Shakespeare Theatre Company in DC, Sarah Cubbage ’07, Associate Designer. She is also designing sets and costumes for Blood Wedding at London’s Young Vic in the fall. Her designs for La Traviata and Rigoletto are now running in the Metropolitan Opera’s spring season.  Susan’s designs for Hamlet at the Gate Theatre in Dublin just earned her a nomination for BEST SET DESIGN from the 2018 Irish Times Irish Theatre Awards. Susan is the recipient of the 2019 TDF/Irene Sharaff Lifetime Achievement Award for Costume Design with the ceremony on April 26th!

Constance Hoffman is currently working on a ballet design for Ballet Austin called GrimmTales, a collaboration with choreographer Stephen Mills, set designer George Tsypin ‘84, and the Artist Natalie Frank. It opens on March 30th in Austin, TX. Constance’s next two projects are two very different designs for The Marriage of Figaro. The first one opens at the Opera Theatre of St. Louis in late May, directed by Mark Lamos, set design by Paul Sternberg, and lighting design by Chris Ackerlind. In October, the second Figaro opens as the first of the three Mozart/Da Ponte operas that will unfold at the San Francisco Opera over the next three years. Director Michael Cunningham, set design by Erhard Rom ‘92, lighting design by Jane Cox ‘98. Cosi Fan Tutti will open in 2020 and Don Giovanni will open in 2021.

Allen Lee Hughes is preparing the design for a new play Toni Stone by Lydia R. Diamond. The play, which is about a female baseball player who plays with the men of the Negro league, is directed by Pam MacKinnon and will start previews May 23rd.

Christine Jones is currently working on a remount of an adaptation of Cyrano with music by The National. She is also designing Aida for The Metropolitan Opera with Susan Hilferty. Her public art installation Theatre for One will be happening in Dublin in June. 

Rebecca Lord-Surratt just designed the premiere of Tell Them I’m Still Young at the South Orange Performing Arts Center starring Andre Braugher. This spring, she is art directing a number of special events for Viacom Media Networks and production designing the 2019 Viacom Newfront. You can also see her art direction work in the upcoming season 4 of Billions on Showtime.

Maggie Raywood: You can tell spring is coming...bulbs are popping up, early flowering plants are showing, trees are showing color in their buds, and I am starting to get calls from winter-weary clients looking to get out into their gardens. April will certainly signal the start of spring cleanups and planning meetings for spring projects. 

Paul Steinberg is presenting the set design for the Handel opera Tamerlano on April 5th for the Frankfurt Opera. It is a site-specific production at the historic Bockenheimer train depot directed by R B Schlather with costume designs by department alum Doey Luethi ‘95. It opens in October 2019. The Twilight Zone continues its run in the West End with preparations for a NY transfer in the works.

Robert Wierzel is working on the following projects in April: Hamlet, directed by Barbara Gaines; scenery by Scott Davis; costumes by Susan Mickey; sound design by Lindsay Jones; projections by Mike Tutaj. Chicago Shakespeare Theatre; and Jubilee,  a new play with music, written and directed by Tazewell Thompson; musical direction by Dianne Adams McDowell; scenery by Donald Eastman; costumes by Merrily Walsh; sound design by Fabian Obispo; projections by Shawn Duan, World première, Arena Stage, Washington DC.