Madeleine Young
Tableau, March 2017

The Tableau project was an incredible production to work on.

Every year at Central, first year students from the Scenic Art, Scenic Construction, Prom Making, Costume Construction, Stage Management and Technical Production Management courses come together to recreate an image of a scene, that is assigned to them by the school.

It is fundamentally a research and and realisation task, and requires a huge amount of thorough and rigorous investigation into every element of the scene; as scenic artists, we spent three weeks visiting museums, stately homes, using the internet, books, and our own previous experience to discover the style of wallpaper that would have been in a room of that style, class and age at that time, which we then went on to produce ourselves from scratch, as well as working on every other element of the set. Because our primary objective was to reproduce the scene depicted as accurately as possible, it was quite challenging. It needed to be historically accurate, and also believable as a scene, but the room itself didn’t make sense. The dado rail was far higher than was typical, the fireplace was way out of scale with the rest of the room and the colour of the wallpaper and floor neither correct to the style nor particularly pleasant.

Overall, the eventual outcome was well worth all the time and effort that went into researching and producing it, and it was heralded as the best Tableau project Central had seen so far.