Murder On The Orient Express

By Ken Ludwig Based on the Story by Agatha Christie
McCarter Theatre
Hartford Stage
directed by Emily Mann
costume design by William Ivey Long, Lighting design by Ken Billington
2017

Sirkeci Train Station, Instanbul
Veanne Cox, Maboud Ebrahimzadeh & Allan Corduner.

Tokatlian Hotel, Istanbul
Allan Corduner, Julie Halston & Juha Sorola.

The Orient Express
Maboud Ebrahimzadeh, Allan Corduner, Max von Essen & Julie Halston.

The Orient Express
Samantha Steinmetz, Susannah Hoffman, Juha Sorola, Max von Essen, Maboud Ebrahimzadeh, Alexandra Silber, Allan Corduner, Evan Zes & Veanne Cox.

The Orient Express
Samantha Steinmetz,  Allan Corduner, Veanne Cox,  Maboud Ebrahimzadeh, Evan Zes, Julie Halston & Alexandra Silber.

The Orient Express
Max von Essen, Susannah Hoffman, Allan Corduner, Veanne Cox, Julie Halston, Evan Zes, Alexandra Silber, Samantha Steinmetz & Juha Sorola.

Epilogue
Allan Corduner

“Beowulf Boritt's set is astonishing, from the exotic Turkish hotel, to the train station to the train interior, where most of the action occurs. That train is a wonder. Everything is gleaming and posh, with chrome and ruby tones. It’s like watching very stylish people scurrying about inside a Fabergé egg. They move left to right, right to left, and squeeze by each other in the aisles. It’s a horizontal play. The only suggestion of depth is the woods, poking up behind the train cars as the snow falls.” ~Bob Brown, Central Jersey.com

But as mentioned in the opening paragraph, the train is the star — or the imaginative set design of the train to be more exact.  Tony-Award winning designer Beowulf Boritt has created a stunning set that features a train with several compartments that roll left and right to show different areas of the train.  The set is absolutely gorgeous and the various train compartments are used to great effect.” ~Gary Wien, NJ Stage

“The elaborate train set is truly stunning, with a filigreed exterior and appropriately claustrophobic interior that suggests both glamour and exotic intrigue. As good as the design is, somehow, it does not overwhelm either the characters or the story.” ~C.W.Walker, Asbury Park Press

“But chances are you’ll be too dazzled by what you see on the stage to worry about plot intricacies like that. Director Emily Mann has concocted a production that is cinematic in its scope, with lighting (by Ken Billington) and strategically placed curtains that focus the viewers’ eyes on key elements. The production values are startlingly high: Beowulf Boritt’s design for the train – gleaming silver surfaces with crimson accents – is a sleek marvel, and William Ivey Long’s lush costumes reach their apex (literally) with a series of comically exaggerated women’s hats.” ~Tim Dunleavy, DCMetroTheaterArts

“The sets by Tony-winner Beowulf Boritt, and Mann's inventive use of the McCarter space, are the reason to see Murder on the Orient Express." ~Patrick Maley, NJ.com

“To design the train Beowulf Boritt … Spectacular set.” ~John Timpane, Philadelphia Inquirer

“The sets are stunning as the train chugs along, with an elegant dining car, sleeping quarters and caboose. The time is 1934 and Beowulf Boritt’s set reflects the period.” ~Lix Keill, TAP into NJ

A marvelous, ornate set of train cars designed by Beowulff Boritt.” ~Bruce Chadwick, History News Network

Everyone is a top-drawer Manhattan hand. Beowulf Boritt designed the set, a stylized coach that shifts right and left as the action unfolds.”~David Finkle, Huffington Post

“Beowulf Boritt’s brilliant set design. Simulating the movement of the train by strategically utilizing the curtain and moving set pieces, his design beautifully captured the rhythm and atmosphere of the train, transporting the audience’s imagination into the play’s specific setting. Almost the entire show took place on the train set piece, and Boritt’s ability to make this space aesthetically pleasing and detailed, while accommodating the whole cast without feeling cramped, was truly incredible.”~Danielle Hoffman, The Daily Princetonian

“Beowulf Boritt’s scenic design, especially his spectacular rolling train set, conjures the images of the great trains that criss-crossed Europe.” ~Allen Neuner, Out In Jersey

"It’s a wide, shallow set, more than two train cars long though you only see a bit more than one car at a time. How they fit the rest of that massive set backstage is a mystery as compelling as the one in the play." ~Christopher Arnott, CT Now

"The sets at Hartford Stage are always impressive, and this rendering of the famous train is no exception. The elegant train cars move both on and off stage and are so big that they almost deserve a bio in the program. " ~Nancy Janis, Naugatuck Patch

"Firstly the Grand Dame of this production is the majestic, oh-so magnificent train set designed by Tony-Award winning designer Beowulf Boritt. When first revealed, gentle “ooooh and awwwws” can be heard being released throughout the theater – yes it’s a “grand exotic piece de la résistance” a triptych of a ‘30’s period train consisting of conductor, dining and coach compartments, that rolls back and forth, snow covered woods beckon behind, as our suspects scurry about – the train is the drama – it’s designed to make an impression and it does." ~ Steven Frydman, The Howard On Stage and Screen

"One of the other stars of the play are Beowulf Boritt’s sets, most notably the sleek, skeletal richness of the Orient Express.  The exactitude and detail of the train sections add a wow factor to an already entertaining production." ~Stuart Brown, WRTC FM Radio

"Speaking of enthralling two of the high points of Hartford Stage's production of MURDER ON THE ORIENT EXPRESS are Beowulf Boritt's breathtaking scenic design and Tony-award winning costume designer William Ivey Long's stunning costumes. The audience on opening night audibly gasped when the Art deco inspired train set was revealed and proceeded to applaud for it before any action on the train even took place.  The set and costumes are truly a sight to behold, " ~Joseph Harrison, Broadway World

"Beowulf Boritt’s set, which travels from an exotic Istanbul station to a first-class train, complete with luxury accommodations and dining car, is a feast for the eyes. " ~Mark Auerbach, Westfield News


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