Stage One

Year 2018

War Requiem


This production of Benjamin Britten’s War Requiem saw Turner Prize-winning photographer Wolfgang Tillmans design a sparse set comprising three huge screens and a single, large abstract form. This extruded form was the only piece of physical scenery on stage, providing a raised performance area while evoking the confusion and decay of war.

Our interpretation team worked from a scanned maquette, helping develop the design before realising the form in polystyrene using our large volume 5-axis CNC machine. This was further refined with hand carving and infilled with polyurethane foam before being coated with GRP. A traditional scenic scrim was layered with a silver metallic finish chosen to work with the stage lighting.

Standing at 1.5m high, the form covered a footprint of 5m by 3m. Manufactured in four sections, it was assembled off-stage, integral fixing points allowing it to be lowered into position as a single piece. A series of hand and foot holds provided safe access for performers, the internal steel skeleton adding stability and also enabling it to be easily dismantled and stored.


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