Designer | Joe Vanek

Paul Howard’s new play marks the eighth production that Joe has designed for Landmark. He has been designing in Ireland since 1984 and is closely associated with the plays of Brian Friel. For Dancing at Lughnasa he was nominated for two Tony Awards on Broadway and subsequently designed two further new plays of his there after their Dublin premieres. Also in the USA he has designed Marina Carr’s By The Bog of Cats with Holly Hunter, the original operatic version of The Phantom of the Opera in both St Louis and San Francisco and in summer 2011 he will be designing Medea for the Glimmerglass Opera Festival in New York State.

He was the Director of Design at Abbey Theatre ( under Patrick Mason ) from 1994 – 97 and major plays designed there have included works by Frank McGuinness, Tom Kilroy, Tom MacIntyre, Tom Murphy, and Hugh Leonard. He is currently writing a book – Irish TheatreScapes – about his Irish design work over 25 years, to be published by Carysfort Press. His work is also well known from his long term association with Gate Theatre, where he recently designed Arcadia. Other recent work has included The Poacher for the Buxton Opera Festival in the UK, The Rivals at the Abbey and, at Smock Alley Theatre last November, Landmark’s memorable production of Knives in Hens.

He has designed extensively in the UK, in London’s West End and in Denmark, Holland, Israel and Australia. As a designer of opera he has worked with many major companies, including Wexford where from 2006 – 2008 he was the Design Associate. Two operas designed there won Irish Times Best Production Awards and for Opera Ireland’s The Silver Tassie he won Best Costume Design.