Next To Normal
Director: Krysti Wilson
Next to Normal is a musical about a dysfunctional family. The main character, Diana, is the mother of Natalie and is diagnosed with depression, bipolar disorder, and other mental illnesses (which is later discovered to be caused by the loss of her first child, a son named Gabriel). The majority of the show takes place from her point of view/mind and I wanted to emphasize the effects and symptoms of bipolar disorder. Greatly influenced by the portrayal of the disorder in Black Box, I wanted to create two different worlds: the supposed "real" world and Diana's bipolar world. To do this I made sure to make the bipolar induced world vibrant, very colorful where as the "real" world was less colorful and more blunt, as if Diana's condition was sucking out some of the life from the people around her. This contrast also helped me create a dynamic look that could focus the audience's attention in serious moments and show the severity of mental illness.
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Scenic Design: Torsten Louis