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Do you hear/see what I hear/see?

A work-in-progress speculative design for the play 

Fear and Misery of the Third Reich by Bertolt Brecht

Welcome to my exhibition!

During this five days exhibition, I'll keep working on my design work and posting the products here, including drawings, storyboard making, and making stop motion video to imitate the live experience of the designed show.

The stop motion videos for the first scene are available to watch now.

During the exhibition, I'll be working on the second scene and keep posting, stay tuned for more updates.

About this design:


When in a performance everyone wearing headphones, one can never be 100% sure if they're all hearing the same thing as everyone else.

I find this idea of isolation in a collective experience fascinating.

The play consists of 24 life stories under Hitler's rule, and I have to say a lot of them are stereotyped horrible and absurd life stories under the dictatorship. My design is focusing on how Nazi can still easily exist today in a different form and causing similar or new problems, in this era of technologies. To make the stories more relatable and more meaningful to the audiences nowadays.

It came to me as a personal struggle during this global pandemic that this pandemic is causing deeper oppositions between cultures and nations. All media deliver the same event more or less from their own perspective, not to mention that everyone can take the same information differently. As long as there're humans involved, is there any true objective delivery of information? We're constantly taking in information from where we have easy access to; this gave us different sets of facts and eventually different mindsets.

As someone who speaks several languages and has been living in different countries with entirely different cultures and languages, I'm privileged to have access to see and hear things from different perspectives. However, the more aspects I see things from, the more I feel the complexity of things. At the same time, I had this struggle of not being able to communicate efficiently with people who don't have my privilege to see more than one side; it's a frustration of not being able to find the right audiences to communicate with. This frustration itself is the thing I want to embody in the design, is what I want my audiences to experience. I am hoping to find a way for me to communicate with the audience as a designer.​

All these thoughts led me to the thinking of restricting audiences' perceptions.

Sightlines have been traditionally treated as restrictions for the set designers when designing. They need to take the whole auditorium into account, not to put too much design outside the sightline to create less restricted view seats.

The same goes to the audio engineers. One of their most important jobs is to make sure all the audiences to have similar auditory experiences, no matter where they sit.

What is going to have an impact on the audiences are not the text being performed on stage, but what they experienced in this space. The experience of uncertainty will make the audiences to think and question the "reality" they see and hear, their relationship to other people from different background and where they take information from.

By using a wall and headphones to block audiences' visual/auditory perceptions, I embodied my dramaturgical thinking on top of the original text in the design, enabling me to 'talk' to the audiences directly as a designer.

The other main reason for me to choose this text is, the 24 unconnected short scenes are perfect for me to test out different use of the space that I designed. I want to see how I can use the simple space differently, to serve different dramaturgical functions.  

I'll keep updating new concept pictures of each scene here.

The Space

As you can see, section A can see stage right side, and section B stage left, while section C can see more or less both sides.


You can now start to watch the stop motion animation for scene one.

In this scene, Two SS Officers talk about "United Nation" and then start shooting.

In my design, I have added a cameraman and an assistant with the two performers, filming them, and reminds them of their lines and actions. This will only happen on the stage left side, so audiences in section A will only be able to see what's happening through the camera.

All three views are available to watch, feel free to watch in any order, but please bear in mind that when in a real performance, you only get to see it from one view in one show.

View From Section A

View From Section A
Search video...
View From Section A

View From Section A

Play Video
View From Section B

View From Section B

Play Video
View From Section C

View From Section C

Play Video

I hope you enjoyed the videos, I have two simple questions for you.

1. When you're watching it your first time, do you feel like you want to watch again from a different angle?

2. If you watched more than one video, which view would you prefer?

Your answer will be extremely helpful for my development of the show, I appreciate you taking the time answering it.

Please submit your answer here:

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