Top Girls

For Top Girls, a feminist commentary on 1980’s Britain, I designed a series of open steel boxes and ladders with a smashed glass surround to use as a visual metaphor for Joyce’s disastrous breaking of the “glass ceiling.” We spent countless hours in the shop and light lab experimenting to achieve a smashed glass look both safely and within budget. We acquired damaged windshields from a local shop, smashed further with rubber mallets and heat guns and covered them with a protective epoxy covering. These windshields were then hung to form a large 30-foot wide backdrop against black that could sparkle menacingly or recede from view. Piles of more broken glass formed a surrounding “moat” along the perimeter of the set that separated it from the audience.

Caryl Churchill
Augustine Ripa
Lighting Designer: 
Jeffrey Milet
Costume Designer: 
Pam Richey
Venue : 
Diamond Theatre, Lehigh University