Age of Arousal by Linda Griffiths
Edinburgh Lyceum & Stella Quines, UK tour
Director Muriel Romanes, Lighting Janine Davies
Nomination Best Design CATS Awards
Like Janet Bird's costumes, which filter the stiff formality of the Victorian bustle through a 21st-century lens, she allows the passion to poke through the prim surface of respectability. Guardian
Janet Bird's inventive design is superb Guardian
In Muriel Romanes's gloriously bold and inventive production, though, it emerges as a truly radical piece of theatre, presented in short, vivid, free-flowing episodes on a sparsely furnished stage backed by a screen against which each fraught tableau of characters is silhouetted.
Janet Bird's costumes represent a glorious stylisation of late-Victorian dress, with hoops and bustles bursting out of their fabric shells.
Janet Bird’s Victorian couture costuming is splendid. All tightly tied pointed boots and pale silver bodices, Bird’s design clashes the old and the new worlds which rage throughout the production, stripping her gowns back to their skeletal frames and sloping them high above the knee.
Muriel Romanes’s stylish and witty production for her Stellar Quines company, co-produced with the Royal Lyceum, matches them every step of the way, played out against a simple back-lit curtain with just a few pieces of furniture. The most striking feature is Janet Bird’s costume designs, with the petticoats and bustles of Victorian frocks deconstructed to show how they entrap the women.