The Society of British Theatre Designers

Staging Places: We Are The Storytellers Now - open until March 13, 2020 at V&A London

St.Ia's Skirt

St.Ia's Skirt
  • Production: Well Wishers Festival
  • Venue: Porthmeor Beach St. Ives
  • Year: 2011
  • Author: Andrea Carr
  • Directed by: Andrea Carr
  • Costume Design by: Andrea Carr
  • Scenography by: Andrea Carr
  • Design © Andrea Carr
St Ia’s Skirt is a costume and sculpture. It formed part of the Well Wishers Festival where I was artist in the landscape on Pothmeor Beach in St Ives and was used in a site-specific performance involving the community. I devised a promenade performance that linked two locations, setting out from a disused well, across a graveyard to the beach. The character walked, as if in a dream, pulling behind her a long train representing her life’s travels, a time line from the dark ages to the present day. Inspired by both Orlando by Virgina Woolf, and the story of St Ia (a Cornish legend that tells of St Ia’s arrival from Christian Ireland on a giant leaf). The character arrives onto the beach, and stepping from the costume, winds the train around the base of the dress to form a well, people were invited to throw stones into the ‘well’ and make a wish. Now free from her worldly identity she walks away from the costume/sculpture and returns to the sea. The costume is now being used as a starting point for a design lead performance adaptation of Orlando after Virgnia Woolf dir. Andrea Carr, exploring gender, time travel and environment, R and D Nov.’13, Shorditch Townhall, project in dev.’15.