The School for Scandal

“The costumes and make-up are particularly exquisite… Snakeskin and leopard spotted jackets, embroidered waistcoats and pantaloons – and that’s the men. The ladies are dolled up in whalebone corsets, crinoline and bizarre wigs of shredded paper.”
– Leftlion

Photos: Lauren Connolly / Alan Fletcher
Writer: Richard Brinsley Sheridan
Director: David Longford
Costume Designer: Lauren Connolly
Co-Costume Designers: Lizzie Bettsworth, Harriet Clarke, Rohanna Coulthard, Isobel Hollis
Lighting Designer: Michael Donaghue
Sound Design/Operation: Alex Oxley
Assistant Director: Gary Keane
Stage Manager: Caroline Pope
Musicians: John Crawford, Richard Mecia
Theatre Royal, Nottingham

This costume design competition project saw 5 design students and making students from Nottingham Trent University envision and create costumes for the 150th anniversary of the opening of the Theatre Royal Nottingham.
The School for Scandal was the first production to be staged at the Theatre Royal Nottingham on 25 September 1865 which was recreated in 2015.

The design brief was to combine original 18th Century clothing with modern clothing, and the theme of scandalous gossip was portrayed in the characters’ hand made paper wigs inspired by the style of wigs in the 1700’s.

This new production was produced by the venue’s Creative Learning department involving a community cast and sought to put the Theatre Royal itself as one of the ‘stars’ of the show by staging the show as a promenade production. Cast and audience moved from scene to scene, utilising the foyers, the portico, the green room and finally the actual stage itself, with the magnificent Phipps/Matcham auditorium as the set.

On arrival at the Theatre Royal the audience were greeted by Walter Montgomery (played by director David Longford) the Theatre Royal’s first manager in 1865, who introduced this show and then acted as MC throughout.