This play breaks all the traditional boundaries between the actor, audience, and crew. It revolves around Becky, a forty-something woman who is in a rut. Maybe she is not in a rut, but just coasting along in her safe marriage and safe job. Then one evening, a chance encounter with a widower causes Becky to go on a wild adventure.
As Marya Spring Cordes, the director, and I began to talk about the story and world of the play we coined the term "zany with a touch of realism." We weren't really sure what that meant, but we knew it accurately described what we wanted. Another adage that kept popping up when we were talking was, "oh, what a tangled web we weave."
What do you think of when I say, "oh, what a tangled web we weave"? Spiders or spider webs, right? But that has a feeling of deception and evil. This show is anything but that! It is zany with a touch of realism. What also can be weaved together but ribbons? Ribbons - ribbon of highway. (Now you are singing the Woody Guthrie song, This Land is Your Land, aren't you?) As you can see from my research, ribbons have a playful quality and are colorful. Highway entrance and exit ramp can resemble the woven ribbons. Not exactly what Woody Guthrie was singing about. Time-lapse photography of cars on a highway can turn those concrete ribbons into playful colors. This is the seed from which the design grew.
After I created the first model and emailed it to Scott Kimmins, the TD; John Rensel, the LD; and Heather Powell, the prop master; they described it in words even more appropriate for the show like "roller coaster" and "Matchbox car race track". Maybe we should post signs in the lobby for the audience as they enter the theatre, they could say "You must be this tall to ride this ride" or "Curves Ahead" or "You are entering Zany (with a Touch of Realism) Population: 212".