Collaboration with Performing Arts Goes Cuckoo

For the second year running, WSU School of Design and Construction students are collaborating with WSU Performing Arts to design and build sets for the WSUPA spring theater production.

This year, the production is play based upon the classic Ken Kesey novel, One Flew Over the Cuckoo’s Nest, as adapted for the stage by Dale Wasserman and directed by Ben Gonzales.

As part of an Architecture 499 Theater Set Design-Build taught by the production’s Set Designer (and VCEA/SDC Fabrication Labs Manager) David Drake, students Leah Engelhardt (Architecture), Jingxian Xie (Architecture), Bryce Park (Religious Studies), and Ann-Jeanette Seymour (Interior Design), are assisting with the design, planning, and construction of the set for the play, as well as various props.

The collaboration between SDC and Performing Arts is noteworthy for a number of reasons. The VCEA/SDC Fabrication Labs offer a level of professional expertise and equipment (including digital fabrication with 3D printing, laser cutting, and CNC milling) previously unavailable to WSUPA productions. And SDC students assisting the Set Designer are able to apply the design and planning skills they’ve learned to a real-world project demanding teamwork, rigorous attention to detail, and strict adherence to budget and time constraints.

Last year’s collaboration (for the play Rosencrantz and Guildenstern are Dead) won a Meritorious Achievement Award from the Kennedy Center American College Theater Festival for Drake and his student assistants. This year’s production will also be submitted to the festival.

One Flew Over the Cuckoo’s Nest opens on the Jones Theater stage in Daggy Hall on Friday 3 April at 7.30pm, and continues with a 2pm matinee and 7.30pm evening show Saturday 4 April. Three more performances are scheduled for WSU Mom’s Weekend: 7.30pm Friday 10 April, and 2pm and 7.30pm Saturday 11 April.

Theatre set 1
Contact: David Drake

Theatre set 3

Theatre set 2