Hamlet Set and Costume Design.
For our next project we were tasked with designing a set for Shakespeare's Hamlet. As it is such a well known production I wanted to look at the piece in a more contemporary way so decided to focus on designing for a dance piece.
When researching the play I kept focusing on a few of the themes, the main one I looked at being that "the health of the land is linked to the legitimacy of the King". This would become my main focus for my design. As I wanted a contemporary design I decided to have a big tree on a revolve as the main focus of the design. This tree would have different materials hung on it at the beginning of the play, and throughout the scenes actors/dancers would take some of the material off the tree to add to their costumes showing that the land (the tree) is decaying and dying under an illegitimate Kings rule. On both sides of the stage I have designed a brick walls to mimic the castle with branches growing up the sides. I also decided to incorporate projection mapping in my design so vines would be projected on the side of the stage growing as the play went on. Projection mapping would also be used on some of the fabric as the tree spun on the revolve.
I also wanted to incorporate this theme of the land and nature in some of the costumes such as Hamlet's and Ophelia's as you can see below. As well as the theme of nature I also wanted to include references to what happens to the characters in their costumes in order foreshadow the events of the play. For example the colours mostly used for Ophelia are blues and purples to represent her death. I also included wine stains on Gertrude's dress as its said she drinks a lot throughout the performance.