The Society of British Theatre Designers

The Value of Design

Holly McCarthy

Gallery Images

  • 1977
  • the house of bernarda alba
  • will

Biography

British born Holly McCarthy spent the first part of her life in Cyprus before returning to the U.K. in 1996 when her family settled in Wales.

She graduated from the Royal Welsh College of Music and Drama (RWCMD) in 2005, with a B.A.Hon’s in Theatre Design. Whilst at RWCMD Holly successfully designed productions of ‘As you like it’ and ‘Stars in the morning sky’, as well as receiving a ‘Cardiff New Theatre Award’ for innovation in puppetry for ‘Wide awake and Dreaming’.
Her professional portfolio, thus far, showcases work which spans many genres of theatre. A few of her Design credits include:

Set and Costume Designer, for the German Premiere of ‘Frost Nixon’ Directed by Michael Bogdanov (The Hamburger Kammerspiele).
Set and Costume design, for ‘Swbryd Yn Y Nos’ Directed by Erica Eirian, ‘Warrior Square’ and ‘Hazey Jane’, Directed by Kevin Lewis (Which were all new plays for Theatre Iolo, Touring Theatre, Cardiff).
Co-Designer and Puppeteer, for ‘The ‘Alternating Currents’ project’ written and directed by Geoff Moore (Moving Being Ltd, The National Heritage Museum, Swansea)
Set and costume designer, for ‘The House of Bernarda Alba’ and ‘The Trojan Women’, Directed by Erica Eirian (for Theatr Peña - a company which she is a Founding member of)
Costume Designer (co-designed with David Emanuel), for the National tour of ‘Thorn birds, the Musical’ Directed by Michael Bogdanov (for Wales Theatre Company).
Costume designer, ‘For you’ (Written by Ian McEwen & Michael Berkeley) and ‘Letters of a Love Betrayed’ (by Eleanor Alberga and Donald Sturrock) both Directed by Michael McCarthy and conducted my Michael Rafferty (for Music Theatre Wales). Both Premiered at the Royal Opera House's Lindbury Studio.

Holly has also worked as an assistant in Set, Costume and Puppetry for companies such as, BBC Torchwood, Bath Theatre Royal, The Tobacco Factory and Wales Theatre Company and Music Theatre Wales and for Designers such as Simon Banham and Sean Crowley; this has included productions such as ‘Great Expectations’, ‘Romeo and Juliet’, Philippe Boesmans’ ‘Julie’ and Harrison Birtwistle’s ‘Punch and Judy’. Holly has also worked as a Wardrobe Dresser for companies such as Welsh National Opera, Cameron Mackintosh, Matthew Bourne, on shows such as ‘Don Carlos’, ‘Edward Scissorhands’ and the opening of the ‘Les Miserables’ 2009 U.K. tour to name but a few.
Holly has also returned to the RWCMD. on several occasions, as a tutor in Puppetry and computer aided Prop skills, and has most recently been organising the third year Design Exhibition in Cardiff and London. Recently she has also worked for the University of Aberystwyth as a Design lecturer and as a tutor in Model-making for the stage. She is also incredibly proud to have worked as part of the Scenofest team at the last Prague Quadrennial, International Design Exhibition.