20 Nov 2017
Ugly Lies The Bone, London
Ugly Lies the Bone is a new play by Lindsey Ferrentino which opened in February at the Lyttelton, National Theatre in London.
The play is set between the epic and the domestic: the central character has returned from war with debilitating burns and is offered VR therapy: temporary transplantation to a virtual world for pain relief.
The action oscillates fast between the epic arctic vistas she experiences within her VR headset, and oppressive small domestic settings where she attempts to reengage with what’s left of her life.
The set is a bowl-shaped map of Titusville, Florida, a now dwindling small American town originally born out of the national optimism of the former space shuttle programme at Cape Canaveral.
Each of the two thousand buildings were applied by hand by the National Theatre Scenic workshops on the South Bank.
The design fused the epic and the intimate, and provided a collective theatrical analogue to the solitary VR experience: a version of virtual reality that could be experienced communally.