Director Fiona Shaw
Designers Dorothy Cross and Tom Pye
Technical Projection Design Lysander Ashton
English National Opera
November 27th-30th 2008
Fifty Nine Productions provided technical consultancy services for this Vaughan Williams production at the English National Opera.
Directed by Fiona Shaw, the production opened on November 27th for four performances only at the Coliseum, St Martin's Lane.
'A startling image of what might at first be construed as the tall shadow of a hooded form looking out to sea quickly emerges as an overhead perspective on an Ophelia-like figure suspended in the husk of a fishing boat, her long robes flowing into the water as oceanic projections (Dorothy Cross) gradually overwhelm her...Quietly devastating.''
'An ambitious video installation of watery images...ravishing'
'The actor Fiona Shaw had turned director and prefaced Vaughan Williams's adaptation of JM Synge's Riders to the Sea with Sibelius's solo cantata Luonnotar - the point of conjunction being the theme of water as bringer of life and of death, illustrated in subtle video by Dorothy Cross which managed to be both unobtrusive and evocative.'
'60 minutes of haunting music and striking images.'
'What the director, Fiona Shaw, manages to do — in a staging very much mirroring the heightened physicality of her own acting — is combine Celtic intensity, superstition and spirituality with the inevitability of Greek tragedy. In Dorothy Cross’s filmic projections we constantly see drowned bodies and upturned boats. Ghosts haunt the stage, just as they haunt Maurya’s tormented mind.'