The Seagull opened at sunrise in an outdoor amphitheater overlooking the East River. Each morning, hundreds of sleepy New Yorkers made their way downtown to the performance on the water. The production roved across several settings scattered throughout the park. Silent background scenes with characters smoking a cigarette behind the house, fishing, or going for a stroll enhanced the onstage action and built a world that fully engaged the surroundings.
Each character carried a pouch of pure pigment with their designated color. It was a visible, tangible representation of outbursts, auras, and connections. These impressions created an emotional storyline audience members could track between characters, the marks of love or fear or despair we leave on one another. Nina’s pink and Arkadina’s yellow compete for the space over Konstantin’s heart; Trigorin’s blue dust coats Nina’s cheek and lips; Masha’s black cloud trails her everywhere.
With the sun rising behind the action, colors bursting through the morning air, and performers in every direction – for a few short hours, Russian country life overtook the park while the rest of New York City rolled out of bed.