25 May 2023 / Lectures

Edward Gordon Craig Lecture 1st June 2023: Designing Pantomime

Designing Pantomime

Book your free ticket on Eventbrite. You cannot book your tickets via the Society for Theatre Research website.

This year’s Society for Theatre Research and Royal Central School of Speech and Drama Edward Gordon Craig Lecture is held in collaboration with the UK Pantomime Association.

Contemporary pantomime offers a wide array of practice and production models, from large-scale commercial all-star pantomimes at the London Palladium, to smaller shows with local performers produced in-house at venues across the United Kingdom. Whether the budget is multi-million or merely modest, design is a key feature of pantomime’s identity with spectacle and transformation often cited as core genre components in such a visual medium.

From comedy Dame costumes that can withstand custard pies to enchanting ballgowns that turn into rags, pantomime design presents many opportunities and challenges as creatives balance innovation with tradition, acknowledging pantomime’s rich history, whilst embracing the contemporary and remaining relevant for audiences. Pantomime has always embraced new technology to achieve this, from modes of flying to special effects, and more recently digital sets, but how is this, along with a disappearance of paint frames across the country, contributing to pantomime’s evolutionary course?

Join us on Thursday 1st June as a panel of prominent pantomime designers reflect on their own contemporary practice and discuss where the future of pantomime design might take the genre.