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University of Maryland
Professor - Daniel Conway


  The Pillowman by Martin McDonagh is the story of a writer and his brother who are accused of killing three children the same way three of Katurian’s characters are murdered in his dark and violent short stories.

    At its core, the play is built on twisted connections between facts. McDonagh creates a world where you cannot trust anyone. The premise of the world is totalitarian manipulation. In the Police State, the policemen are at the top of the food chain. "Justice" rises above ordinary men and we look at the stories through the interrogation room. 

   The world of stories created by Katurian Katurian is his attempt to escape the cold reality. Nevertheless, his fairytales are still tangled with totalitarian surroundings. When reading the stories we dive into this paper-like mysterious forest where your nightmares are born. The only real thing left is the room of tortured Katurian's brother. But can we know that for sure?...

University of Maryland
Professor - Daniel Conway

Pillowman box

  Joseph Cornell was an American visual artist, and one of the pioneers of assemblage. Cornell's most characteristic artworks were boxed assemblages created from found objects. 

   The aim of this project was to investigate the play in a non-theatrical way. I broke down the most important messages from the script into words: manipulation, repetition, reflection, an image of the leader, cold, misleading, mystical, obscure.

  Another critical aspect of learning from this project was exploring the sculptural aspect of installation art.

     The challenge of this project is finding the right objects for the assemblage to tell the story of the play

University of Maryland
Professor - Daniel Conway


    Indecent by Paula Vogel tells the story of Sholem Asch’s controversial play, The God of Vengeance, and the passionate artists who risked everything to bring it to the stage. Vogel’s Indecent celebrates the love, magic, and hope of the theatre even in the face of the greatest adversities.

   The design concept is based on returning to memories through old photos and postcards. The important visual metaphor is a window as a representation of many things, everything from your cozy home to the horizons of a new country. The window appears as a symbol in Warsaw, in Łódź, in New York, and of course in Ellis Island, the pivotal moment for every character moving to America for a better life. 

  When the American dream is ruined by the unacceptance of other cultures, morality, and sexuality, and your own homeland is being destroyed by ruthless politicians, what do you do? How can one find the courage to shake off the desperation of war and fight for their future? The show is a revision of history and it offers us solutions. Our only job is to listen carefully to what these ghosts of the past Happy Days have to tell us.


University of Maryland
Professor - Daniel Conway

Cherry tortured

    Cherry Tortured is a new play by an American playwright and director Aaron Posner. The play is an adaptation of an old play Cherry Orchard by Anton Chekhov. 

    As a Russian-born artist, I was interested in exploring the eternity of emotions within people from different periods and counties. Working with both plays simultaneously and trying to unpack an American identity as a Russian-born designer, I aimed to create a world of emotional disunity and the decaying beauty of a family bond.

Costume Design by Tori Niemiec

University of Maryland
Professor - Daniel Conway


    Médée is an opera by Luigi Cherubini. The libretto by François-Benoît Hoffman is based on Euripides' tragedy of Medea and Pierre Corneille's play Médée. It is set in the ancient city of Corinth.
    I was interested in exploring the aspect of people's feelings that overgrow centuries. What is the rage for ancient Greeks is the rage for 19th-century society, and is the rage for modern-day humans. There is something eternal about the story of Medea.
   I feel about Medea as I feel about storms in the ocean. She is unpredictable and furious, but same as she appears in rage, she will disappear for the world to regain balance. The storm is always over, the revenge always comes to an end, and the people relive the stories of the past again and again. 
   Women in this opera are central characters and I find it thrilling how Glauce and Medea are two sides of the same coin. Both are somewhat loved by Jason, both exist in limiting inconsiderate environments, and both embody the fate of a woman in a patriarchal society.  Yet, one obeys and stays not being heard, another protests and fights for her feelings.
     The set promotes variety of spaces and sensations by the support of media design. The scenic design suggests main visuals to be a sandy cliff, a wave about to crush, a flame burning through the sky...

University of Maryland
Professor - Daniel Conway

faculty dance concert

Co-Design with Lin (Thea) Luo

       Faculty Dance Concert is an annual event at the University of Maryland Department of Theatre, Dance, and Performance Studies. The Concert of Fall 2023 proposed a brave idea to perform within a theatre space, discarding all masking. We are opening the space as we are opening our hearts to the world. This idea of an exposed theatre space aimed to promote a feeling of creating the environment together with the audience. In this world nothing ever stops, objects move, people appear and disappear, and thoughts travel unimaginable distances.

   Faculty Dance Concert hosts multiple choreographers on one alterable set. The design supports the idea of exposure as well as the idea of hiding, and helps dance creators to strengthen their ideas. 

Choreography by Alvin Mayes
Topics of interest: homelessness

Choreography by Kate Ladenheim

Topics of interest: motion capture in a vast space

Choreography by Maura Keefe

Topics of interest: Topography

Media Design by Leo Grierson

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