“All the world’s a stage, And all the men and women merely players, They have their exits and entrances, And one man in his time plays many parts, His acts being seven ages.” Jaques monologue, “As you like it” William Shakespeare
The “Stage” is an architectural host to the performance documented in the “Record” project. Your proposal will provide the “players” (performers and audience) with “stage”, “exits and entrances” and the minimum essential facilities for the “Acts” and “Ages” of the place, people and city. Consider the “Stage” equivalent to a prototypical seasonal bandstand and landscape, seen through the lens of your chosen performance. The “Stage” may be singular, multiple, condensed or distributed; permanent, seasonal, transitory, or transformational in response to the daily/weekly/monthly/annual routines and rhythms of the city and nature of the performance; but it must harness and celebrate the local cultural, urban and environmental conditions, to delight, entertain, inspire and bring this curious corner of the city to life.
The “Stage” site is Phoenix Gardens between Shaftsbury Avenue and Charing Cross Road in the heart of Soho, London; consisting of a haphazard array of gardens, churchyard and urban square defined by incomplete street terraces and topography. The “Stage” may intervene in the site in any way you deem to be appropriate.
Propose Visit, survey and define the proposed location for your “Stage” in Phoenix Gardens, considering the potential “players”, and seasons
Consolidate your “Record” readings of to define the “Stage” performance, scale of production, who the “players” are, the size of the “company”, and the audience
Explore Visit and document local performers to define seasonal timelines, program of performance/rehearsal/preparation, tools and equipment, quantities, sizes and spaces, scale of operation, essential conditions, resources, materials and traditions, consider “front of house”, “on stage” and “backstage” activities
Meet, record, research and document the proposed “Players” (audience and cast), their skills and needs, where they are from or going to, their history
Visit, survey, research, draw, model, record and thoroughly interrogate the Phoenix Gardens site to define the city’s seasonal and permanent “Acts” and programs, the resources, orientation, light, landscape, soundscape, “entrances and exits”, and how these are all woven into your proposals
Explore, experiment and test your ideas on site and in the studio: be the performer, be the audience, what are your props? what is the script? the program?
Record the testing your ideas and proposals on site and against your conceptual, spatial, and cultural agenda and program requirements to develop each next iteration
Explore appropriate materials, construction, structures and environmental systems, by drawing on architectural and performative precedents to develop your own ideas
Present Develop the prototype “Stage” proposal in detail through iterative digital and physical models, drawings, sketches, photography, images, 1:1 acts and performances, samples, and prototypes to present the complete proposal 29th October
Complete your individual documentation of the group work curated in no more than 10no. A1 (or equivalent) Hybrid Sheets and 10no. A1 (or equivalent) Process and Testing sheets integrating constructed, drawn, sketched, rendered, precedent and photographic components into each sheet including models and materials.
Working intensively in pairs you will analyse, define, design, research, understand and document the proposal, site, “performance”, experience and facilities from first inspiration to final iteration. You will be encouraged to experiment directly with the activities proposed to define the spatial brief and inform the design process. Each pair will produce a shared physical model, digital model, pool of iterative design process work, and final drawings, acknowledging the author of each component.
Use any media, material or technique that is appropriate to best explore, test and communicate your ideas
Introduction: Thursday 1st October Week 2
Review: Thursday 29th October Week 6
Portfolio Review: 3rd yrs Monday 7th December Week 12
2nd yrs Thursday 10th December Week 12