Sneak Peek: ‘The Blue Iris’ Set Design at the Fountain

Old decaying farmhouse in the Karoo, South Africa.

In Athol Fugard’s newest play, The Blue Iris, the playwright describes the setting as “the blackened shell of a once proud Karoo farmhouse that was destroyed by fire …  gaping holes of what were once doorways in two of the walls. There are only remnants left of the roof and ceiling that once covered the space.” In the play, farmer Robert Hannay and his housekeeper sift through the ashes and debris of their lives, uncovering hidden secrets and powerful truths about themselves and Robert’s deceased wife, Sally.

The Fountain turned to designer Jeff McLaughlin to create the fire-ravaged farmhouse setting for The Blue Iris. A longtime Fountain award-winning designer, Jeff designed the set for such recent  Fountain productions as The Train Driver, Bakersfield Mist, A House Not Meant to Stand, and Cyrano.

Here is an early pencil rendering of the set design for The Blue Iris:

The cast and director are already in rehearsal, working on the Fountain stage during the week while the current hit production of Cyrano is performed on the weekends. For Blue Iris rehearsals, Tech Director Scott Tuomey has erected a make-shift facsimile of Jeff McLaughlin’s set design so the actors can get a sense of the burned-out farmhouse world Jeff has created for them.

Rehearsal set for “The Blue Iris”

After the final performance this Sunday, the Cyrano set will be struck and the actual Blue Iris set will be brought in and installed. Stay tuned and keep an eye on the Fountain stage as the setting for the new play evolves.

The Blue Iris August 18 – September 16 (323) 663-1525  More Info

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