Designer Stephen Brimson Lewis shares his inspiration for La bohème.
Dana and the Apple, Edward Stichen (1922). An image that seemed to sum up 'Mimi' as both muse and lover - a bridge between painting and photography - a startling contemporary young woman and yet captured 90 years ago. Its these connections that I search for when first staring out to design a new production.
Photograph by Perry Ogden. Francis Bacon's Studio - exquisitely squalid. I needed an image of a real painters studio, not cliched operatic imaginings - but a room where paint reigns. Every surface covered with the history of a thousand marks of testing, working out, frustration, elation. A single window but this one without a view other than perhaps a small piece of sky.
Berwick Street Market, Photograph: (1933). A city space and a city I have known all my life - Its often surprising how much a designer draws on his sub conscious memories - its often more reliable than the conscious, cluttered mind- even though its Paris I am trying to conjure in the audience's minds its inevitable that theres some bleed through from all those tiny details of ones own sense of place.