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Setting the stage for a cross-cultural collaboration

Worldstudio designed the set for Dream’d in a Dream, a cross-cultural collaboration between the dance ensemble, Seán Curran Company and Ustatshakrit Plus, a traditional music group from Kyrgyzstan. The New York premiere at the Brooklyn Academy of Music on October 7th, was part of the 2015 BAM Next Wave Festival. The evening-length work, choreographed and directed by Seán Curran, tells the story of his company’s travels throughout Central Asia while on tour with DanceMotion USA.

As inspiration, Mark Randall, principal of Worldstudio, drew on the architecture, craft and open spaces of the Kyrgyz Republic. For over 2,500 years, the nomadic peoples of the Tien Shan mountains in Kyrgyzstan have made colorful, graphic and symbolic wool felt rugs – shyrdaks – to line their yurts. Felt, an importer of shyrdaks in London, opened their vast archives for Worldstudio to select rugs to collage for the 30 x 25’ backdrop used as a centerpiece for the production.

BAM_3830_wsDance critic Deborah Jowitt, writes in the opening paragraph of her review: “As you enter the BAM Harvey to see the Seán Curran Company’s Dream’d in a Dream, you not only glimpse an embodiment of the title, you begin to enter another kingdom. Not since Peter Brooks’ stunning production of the Sanscrit epic The Mahabharata introduced New Yorkers to the tactfully renovated ruined theater in 1987, have I seen a theatrical vision so compatible with the space.”

Mark worked closely with noted lighting designer Robert Wierzel and costume designer Amanda Shafran to create a rich environment, evocative of the dance and music.


Ustatshakirt Plus


Seán Curran Company

BAM_3862_wsI Dreamed in a Dream

I dream’d in a dream I saw a city invincible to the attacks of the whole of the
rest of the earth,
I dream’d that was the new city of Friends,
Nothing was greater there than the quality of robust love, it led the rest,
It was seen every hour in the actions of the men of that city,
And in all their looks and words.

Walt Whitman


Photos: Mark Randall

Photos: Mark Randall