35 episodes

Lighting Designers James Farncombe and Bruno Poet host conversations about the complex and sometimes messy business of making theatre. With guests from all aspects of production, from directors and designers to actors, stage managers, technicians, builders and producers, the aim is to create a broader awareness of all things involved in bringing a show to the stage.

The Making Theatre Podcast James Farncombe and Bruno Poet

    • Arts
    • 4.0 • 2 Ratings

Lighting Designers James Farncombe and Bruno Poet host conversations about the complex and sometimes messy business of making theatre. With guests from all aspects of production, from directors and designers to actors, stage managers, technicians, builders and producers, the aim is to create a broader awareness of all things involved in bringing a show to the stage.

    Victoria Brennan - Lighting Programmer

    Victoria Brennan - Lighting Programmer

    For this episode, we return to the world of stage lighting,  and a discussion with one of the UK’s leading lighting programmers, Vic Brennan.
    The role of lighting programmer varies considerably depending on the style of the work being made,  but there is no-one more crucial to the process of bringing the lighting designer’s vision to life, whether it be  a fast-paced music theatre number or a subtle, shifting scheme for a play.
    Vic joins Bruno and James to consider the nature and significance of this collaboration, what makes for a good programmer, and to reveal there is a whole lot more to the job than sitting in the dark and pointing bright lights in everyone’s eyes...

    • 43 min
    Laura Cubitt - Puppetry Director

    Laura Cubitt - Puppetry Director

    This time we are talking to Laura Cubitt about her experience as puppeteer and puppetry director. Laura was part of the team that brought the iconic Warhorse, Joey, to life and this is a fascinating insight into a world that is, by it's very nature, secretive if not entirely hidden away. We learn that puppetry has a parallel with lighting; often no-one notices you if you're doing your job well. We hear about the mysterious pleasure to be found in the 'suffering state' and how despite the sweat and cramps, it can be the most thrilling version of performing, with lines of communication akin to a virtuoso jazz trio. We also discover that humans and puppets are successfully holding the line against the onslaught of CGI and AI - in many ways, this interview is a celebration of the humanity at the heart of Making Theatre.

    • 49 min
    Nick Hytner - Building the Bridge

    Nick Hytner - Building the Bridge

    This time we talk to Nick Hytner about forming the London Theatre Company and creating it's first home - the Bridge Theatre at One, Tower Bridge.

    If like us you ever paused to wonder how someone goes about starting a theatre, this episode provides a fascinating insight into the process.

    From the hunt for the venue, and the hair-raising rollercoaster of finding investors and securing funding, to the relationship with the architect and the design of the stage, auditorium, foyer and backstage space, we chart the journey of the Bridge from small, scrappy start-up to sell out run of Guys and Dolls.

    In a wide-ranging interview, Nick also offers some choice observations and sage advice from a directing career that spans forty years and includes a decade spent running that other little place on the South Bank, the National Theatre...

    • 1 hr 1 min
    Lucy Carter - Lighting for Dance

    Lucy Carter - Lighting for Dance

    This time we talk to Lucy Carter about her extensive career designing lighting for contemporary dance, her analysis of her working practice and her extraordinary collaboration with choreographer Wayne McGregor, which spans three decades.

    • 56 min
    Paul Handley - Sustainable Theatre Making

    Paul Handley - Sustainable Theatre Making

    The National Theatre is committed to achieving net zero carbon by 2030, the greatest creative challenge it has ever undertaken. This time we are talking to Paul Handley, Production and Technical Director at the NT about his search for a more sustainable model of theatre making.  We hear about the many and varied ways that staff are trying to limit their environmental impact while still delivering world class theatre. We discuss why it is so important to reflect our values not only in the work we make onstage, but in the way we make it. We also reflect upon the need to get away from the language of dreary limitation, how it is the artists who are actually the people who can lead the way forward and while we should be ready to fail, in the words of Samual Beckett, we must ‘try again, fail again, fail better’. We also learn that there’s nothing that can’t be solved with a pencil, a piece of paper…and a fresh white t-shirt.
    This episode was recorded at the end of 2022

    • 1 hr 5 min
    Angie Bual - Theatre Without Walls.

    Angie Bual - Theatre Without Walls.

    This time, we leave behind the warm, dry confines of the conventional theatre space and head outside for an inspiring conversation with Angie Bual, creative director of Trigger, a company based in the south west of England, who create and produce bold live and digital events, often on a large-scale and often outdoors.

    With obsessions that range from dragons to upholstery via horticulture and kite-flying, Angie is a brave and compassionate artist, who can talk millions of pounds of funding into existence and makes ambitious theatre without walls. We hear about her remarkable journey from a bespoke performance for a house-bound pensioner in a Glasgow tenement, to the hatching of a dragon the size of a double decker bus on the Plymouth Hoe in front of 30,000 people…

    • 54 min

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