John Pascoe John Pascoe
directing and designing
As director, set and costume designer, my job is to bring the opera to the stage cohesively and convincingly. As Olga Haldey wrote of my Lucrezia Borgia (Opera Today, November 2008):
‘A major ingredient in the production’s success was the fact that it was a Gesamtkunstwerk of sorts, with both stage direction and visual design in the excellent hands of the admirable John Pascoe.’
Well, excellent hands or not, at least they are always the same hands, eyes and instinct that guide every decision I make. While most of the designing is done before rehearsals begin, the costume fittings and lighting sessions need to be included during the rehearsal period. For the best results, I have found that my presence is vital for both. ‘Success’ is an overused word; I define it as being when the audience leave the show fizzing with excitement. But for me, it’s also being invited back by the management! My ongoing relationships with many opera companies are testament to this. That’s my job description – and I love doing it.
Directing 1
Renée Fleming in the 2008 Washington National Opera production of Lucrezia Borgia (photo: Karin Cooper).
‘John Pascoe follows in the tradition of the great 20th-century production designers responsible for conceptualising the staging, designing the sets and costumes and directing the performers …’
Opera Warhorses, 9 March 2013