Lesley Preston’s Portfolio

Arrival of the Nasty Man in Eurydice, set, costumes and lights designed by Lesley Preston

Arrival of the Nasty Man in Eurydice, set, costumes and lights designed by Lesley Preston

Lesley Preston’s Portfolio

Here is a sample of the design work I have done at PC and professionally in nearby Greenville.

The PC theatre department presented our first stand alone Christmas dance show this year.  It was called Jingle Belles and included dances to both sacred and secular music of the season.

We Three Kings Trio

We Three Kings Trio

Duet

Duet

Jingle Belles

Jingle Belles

Last fall, we produced a series of one act plays, using the same set pieces for all three weeks to create continuity.  Here are some pictures of those plays.

On the Ledge

On the Ledge

Hospital Scene

Hospital Scene

By the Lake

By the Lake

Eurydice was our spring play in 2010. Set in a watery underworld full of strange characters, Sarah Ruhl’s re-working of the Orpheus myth explores the meaning of love and the value of sacrifice. We created a thrust stage with running water surrounding the acting area and a moving ladder.

The first picture shows a moment between Eurydice and her father, while the chorus of stones looks on in the background.

Father and Daughter moment

Father and Daughter moment

The next picture show the first entrance of the nasty man in the underworld.  This character is a cross between the devil and a very irritating child.  He enters on a tricycle.

Entrance of the Nasty Man

Entrance of the Nasty Man

Eurydice’s father builds her a house out of string in a place where houses are not allowed.  He is trying to protect her, but has few resources to use.

Father builds a house

Father builds a house

At the end of the play, Orpheus comes into the underworld to try to save Eurydice, but he is too late.  He joins Eurydice and her father in oblivion. This picture is of his last entrance, in the raining elevator.

Orpheus descends

Orpheus descends

Before we produced our own dance show we worked collaboratively with the music department on a Christmas show that was presented in our large auditorium.  The set for this show had to serve a full orchestra, a large choir and our dancers.  Here is a picture of that show.

Christmas Show in Belk Auditorium

Christmas Show in Belk Auditorium

Our production for the fall of 2009 was Quilters, a piece of narrative musical theatre chronicling the experience of women as this country was developed.  The first picture is of the women as they head west in a covered wagon.  Quilting hoops are used to represent the top of the wagon.

In the Wagon, Heading West

In the Wagon, Heading West

The next picture shows one of the last moments in the play, when the daughters are burying their mother.

The Funeral

The Funeral

Over the last few years we have produced a yearly Spring/Dance show.  Here are some pictures of dances from the spring show.  I love to light dance.

Thriller

Thriller

Miriam's Solo

Miriam’s solo

Duet

Duet

Elizabeth's solo

Elizabeth’s solo

Spring/Dance Trio

Spring/Dance Trio

In the 2008 -2009 season we produced three plays – The Complete Works of William Shakespeare, abridged, Jaques Brel is Alive and Well and Living in Paris, and Exonerated.  We used the same basic set for all three shows and mixed things up by changing the audience configuration.  For Complete Works, we set up an Elizabethan audience, with pillows on the floor of the “pit” and a high level gallery with chair around.  For Exonerated we set up a standard audience configuration and for Jacques Brel we put out tables and chairs as if we were in a cabaret.  Here are a few pictures of Exonerated and Jacques Brel.

Exonerated Confrontation

Exonerated Confrontation

Exonerated Monologue

Exonerated Monologue

Jaques Brel Full stage shot

Jaques Brel Full stage shot

The Girl that I Would Marry

The Girl that I Would Marry

Funeral Tango

Funeral Tango

I’d like to take the time now to show you some pictures of shows that I designed at Centre Stage in Greenville.  While my Presbyterian College work involves set, lights and costumes, at Centre Stage I am only responsible for the set.  I have worked with three different directors at Centre Stage.

rockcity72

See Rock City Rehearsal set shot

The Dining Room

The Dining Room

Crimes of the Heart

Crimes of the Heart

Bus Stop

Bus Stop

Sylvia

Sylvia

It's a Wonderful Life "The Radio Play"

It’s a Wonderful Life “The Radio Play”

As you can see from those pictures, the Centre Stage space is very specific.  It is an interesting challenge to design realistic sets for that theatre.

I’d like to finish with some highlights of some PC shows from further back. The first set of pictures are from our production of Waiting for Godot.  We did it in the round and created a crossroads, which we felt symbolized their situation.

Trapped at the Crossroads

Trapped at the Crossroads

Night Falls

Night Falls

In our production of Good Person of Setzuan, we took advantage of my recent college sponsored trip to Korea and Japan to create a fictional “oriental” world.  The shape of the acting area was inspired by the Noh stage and the architectural details came from Korea.

Good Person The Trial

Good Person The Trial

Good Person - The Gods Arrive

Good Person – The Gods Arrive

Our production of Glass Menagerie was directed by Drew Stockstill as his capstone project for the theatre major.  He was interested in the dream aspect of the play and we tried to emphasize that in the design.

Laura's Collapse at Dinner

Laura’s Collapse at Dinner

Tom under the Streetlight

Tom under the Streetlight

Laura contemplates the menagerie

Laura contemplates the menagerie

The menagerie was represented by the glass curtain.

Another southern play that we presented was Beth Henley’s Miss Firecracker Contest.  Here is a picture of one of the last moments in that play, when Popeye and Delmont are sitting on the top of the tent, at peace.

It's snowing!

It’s snowing!

The last two pictures I am going to share demonstrate the range of productions that we have done.  The God of Hell, by Sam Shepard, is a scathing indictment of Bush era politics.  The set was designed to show the inner workings (particularly electricity) in the house.  This show also went on tour as part of the Kennedy Center American College Theater Festival.

Sam Shepard's God of Hell

Sam Shepard’s God of Hell

Interrogation in God of Hell

Interrogation in God of Hell

And, to leave on a more upbeat note, here is a picture of one of our productions of Fantastiks.

Episode

Episode

This seems like a good picture to leave you with.  I hope you have enjoyed this visual journey through some of my work.