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Vision vs. Execution: Shuddersome: Tales of Poe

The thumping of a heartbeat. The creek of a door. The howl of a bitter wind. The gong of a clock tower. The clang of alarm bells. The sound of beating wings getting closer and closer… Shuddersome: Tales of Poe, adapted by Lindsay Price, is a vivid and theatrical adaptation of some of Poe’s best known works.

How do you take a vision and execute on that vision? Medomak Valley HS in Waldoboro, Maine produced Shuddersome: Tales of Poe, and the student direction of Antyna Gould and  Juno Buendia.   As is evident in the production photos, their vision of the Shudders included intricate and detailed makeup. We asked Antyna about their vision for the Shudders and then, how they executed on that vision:

My vision for the makeup was to draw attention to the eyes while distorting the face as much as possible. This would give the illusion that the shudders were something humanoid which would make them all the more unsettling. I drew inspiration from various portrayals of demons and Tim Burton-esque art.

The execution of this vision proved to be difficult. The other director and I had created a very intricate design that would require lots of time to do just one. We had a large group of people that needed the makeup and we lacked the sufficient amount of time. We had three people who learned how to put on the makeup along with each actor applying their own base. Therefore, we had to compromise slightly on the design. We had originally agreed on small, curvy lines, but since this took too much time the lines were made sharper and slightly bigger. In both designs the face was just as distorted and creepy.”

Amazing work, Medomak Valley High School – thanks for sharing your success!

Get a copy of the play Shuddersome: Tales of Poe.

*Photo credit: Katie Staples

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Products referenced in this post: Shuddersome: Tales of Poe

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