Art Works Blog

Art Works Podcast: John Conklin

In this week's podcast, the spotlight is on legendary stage designer and 2011 NEA Opera Honoree John Conklin. Conklin’s influence on set design is difficult to exaggerate. His set and costume designs have been seen in opera houses, theaters, and ballet companies around the world. Considered a conceptual rather than a literal designer, he’s not interested in creating a static painting to be used as a backdrop. His designs are often abstract, sometimes whimsical, and always powerful. In this excerpt from the podcast, Conklin explains how he’s been able throughout his career to restage an opera as well-known as Carmen in dramatically different ways. [3:22]

Join us on October 27 when the 2011 National Endowment for the Arts Opera Honors award ceremony takes place at 7:30 p.m. at the Sidney Harman Hall, in downtown Washington, DC. In addition to John Conklin, the NEA is honoring general director Speight Jenkins, mezzo-soprano Risë Stevens, and composer Robert Ward. If you can’t make it to Washington for the event, don’t despair! We are webcasting it live. Click here for more information about this free event and the live webcast.

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