James Perkins

DESIGNER 

Current and forthcoming work includes: DINOSAUR WORLD (UK Tour); THE SECRET SEVEN (Storyhouse, Chester).

Theatre credits include: OF KITH AND KIN (Sheffield Crucible); THE MARCH ON RUSSIA; GERMAN SKERRIES (Orange Tree Theatre); JESS AND JOE FOREVER (Orange Tree Theatre, Traverse Theatre); WHILE WE’RE HERE (Up In Arms, UK Tour); HYSTERIA (London Classic Theatre, UK Tour); SKYLIGHT (Theatr Clwyd); SWEET CHARITY; LITTLE SHOP OF HORRORS (Royal Exchange, Manchester); PILGRIMS (Hightide, Clwyd Theatr Cmyru, Yard Theatre); THE LAST FIVE YEARS (New Wolsey Theatre); THE GATHERED LEAVES (Park Theatre); BREEDERS (St James Theatre); SHIVER; LOST IN YONKERS (Watford Palace Theatre); CIPHERS (Bush Theatre/Out Of Joint); 1001 NIGHTS (Unicorn Theatre/Transport Theatre); LIAR LIAR (Unicorn Theatre); GIRL IN THE YELLOW DRESS (Salisbury Playhouse); MICROCOSM (Soho Theatre); DANCES OF DEATH (Gate Theatre); THE FANTASIST’S WALTZ (York Theatre Royal); STOCKWELL (Tricycle Theatre); CARTHAGE; FOXFINDER; THE BOFORS GUN; TRYING (Finborough Theatre); THE ONLY TRUE HISTORY OF LIZZIE FINN; FLOYD COLLINS (Southwark Playhouse); THE MARRIAGE OF FIGARO (Wilton’s Music Hall); THE LIFE OF STUFF; DESOLATE HEAVEN; THREADS; MANY MOONS (Theatre503); THE HOTEL PLAYS (Grange Hotel); ST. JOHN’S NIGHT; SARABAND (Jermyn Street Theatre); PIRATES, PINAFORE (Buxton Opera House); MATTERS OF LIFE AND DEATH (Contemporary Dance UK Tour); IOLANTHE; THE WAY THROUGH THE WOODS (Pleasance Theatre, London); THE FAERIE QUEEN (Lilian Baylis, Sadler’s Wells); THE WONDER (BAC).

James created STORY WHORES. He is an associate of Forward Theatre Project and one third of paper/scissors/stone.

05 May 2017

James Perkins is Designer on WHILE WE’RE HERE at the Bush Theatre

James Perkins is Designer on WHILE WE’RE HERE at the Bush Theatre

Alice Hamilton directs Barney Norris’s new play as a co-production between Up In Arms, Bush Theatre and Farnham Maltings. Playing until 27th May.

The Times ★★★★

“nice, neat job by the designer James Perkins”

“With enormous empathy and equal amounts of restraint, the cast quietly snap your heart”

https://www.thetimes.co.uk/article/theatre-while-were-here-at-the-bush-theatre-w12-nx7d2b899

Financial Times ★★★★

“a little gem of a play, sensitively written, deftly delivered.”

https://www.ft.com/content/9ea0d158-2e8e-11e7-9555-23ef563ecf9a

Timeout ★★★★ 

“intimate and compassionate”

https://www.timeout.com/london/theatre/while-were-here

The Stage 

“James Perkins’ living room set – with its pine bookshelves and window blinds – perfectly captures Carol’s suburban existence”

“a poignant and subtle piece”

“tender and achingly sad two-hander”

https://www.thestage.co.uk/reviews/2017/review-while-were-here-barney-norris-bush-theatre-london/ 

Broadway World

“James Perkins's design is effectively realistic, re-creating a middle-class domestic environment that speaks of comfort and reliability, with pictures hanging on the wall (family photos at the beach emphasising the sense of place), but also the static dullness of Carol's life, with furniture in studiously neutral tones.” 

http://www.broadwayworld.com/westend/article/BWW-Review-WHILE-WERE-HERE-Bush-Theatre-20170429

The Reviews Hub ★★★★

“gentle and melancholic play is low-key, but it tells us to make the most of life while we’re here, a message that all ages can relate to.”

http://www.thereviewshub.com/while-were-here-bush-theatre-london/  

14 September 2016

Derek Bond and James Perkins open JESS AND JOE FOREVER at the Orange Tree

Derek Bond and James Perkins open JESS AND JOE FOREVER at the Orange Tree

A Farnham Maltings and Orange Tree Theatre co-production, Zoe Cooper’s latest play is directed by Derek Bond and designed by James Perkins. Playing in Richmond until 8th Oct before touring the UK.  

Broadway world ★★★★

“Derek Bond's deft direction ensures the audience is never confused about who is talking and to whom.” 

“brilliantly staged”

“James Perkins' design is simple but effective. The floor is a colourful checked carpet with an intriguing pile of soil in the centre; this pile goes on to represent a river bank, a field and a beach. As the play progresses, the dirt comes more trampled and dispersed, reflecting the erosion of childhood innocence.” 

“a beautifully funny, bittersweet and intensely poignant new work about childhood, growing up and friendship. You will laugh, you will cry, but make sure you get a ticket.”

http://www.broadwayworld.com/westend/article/BWW-Review-JESS-AND-JOE-FOREVER-Orange-Tree-Theatre-12-September-2016-20160913# 

Evening Standard ★★★★ 

“Derek Bond’s sensitive direction captures the unusual mix of earthy truth and lightness in Cooper’s writing”

“a small play with a big heart, a romantic comedy that’s genuinely funny but also unexpectedly powerful”

http://www.standard.co.uk/goingout/theatre/jess-and-joe-forever-theatre-review-bighearted-play-with-buried-magic-at-its-core-a3343411.html

The Stage ★★★★ 

“director Derek Bond’s messy, playful production adds some clever touches: the pair change the lighting with a clicker and use mic stands as fence posts and lecterns. It’s a self conscious production, perfectly underscoring the self consciousness of adolescence.”

“heartrending and heartwarming beauty”

https://www.thestage.co.uk/reviews/2016/jess-and-joe-forever-at-the-orange-tree-theatre-london/ 

What’s On Stage ★★★★

“Her writing has a concerted naivety, cannily matched in the clunkiness of Derek Bond's staging. His DIY production presents a child's eye view, as if Jess and Joe have staged their own story. They hammer mic stands like fence posts, and spread dank soil over the office carpet of James Perkins' set.”

“You'll want to punch the air.” 

http://www.whatsonstage.com/london-theatre/reviews/review-jess-and-joe-forever-orange-tree-theatre_41755.html

Arts Desk ★★★★

“a hugely enjoyable romcom.”

“Derek Bond’s very funny and quietly intense production, deftly designed in an increasingly muddy and minimalistic space by James Perkins”

“quirky, funny, moving and theatrically thrilling – a small play that packs a great emotional punch.” 

http://www.theartsdesk.com/theatre/jess-and-joe-forever-orange-tree-theatre

09 March 2016

James Perkins is Designer on GERMAN SKERRIES at the Orange Tree

James Perkins is Designer on GERMAN SKERRIES at the Orange Tree

The first major revival of Robert Holman’s 1977 drama, which won the George Devine Award, plays at the Orange Tree Theatre until the 2nd of April before touring the UK.

The Evening Standard ★★★★

“watchful piece about buried emotion and self-discovery.”

“charged with mystery.”

http://www.standard.co.uk/goingout/theatre/german-skerries-theatre-review-mystery-of-what-lies-beneath-a3198206.html 

What’s On Stage ★★★★ 

“James Perkins' patch of grass is near-perfect, with its worn path and lose pebbles, tufts and tyres. You slip into the setting quite easily, as if a chunk of coastline had landed, asteroid-like, in the middle of Richmond.”

“Hamilton's production lets you feel the wind's chill and the sun's warmth.” 

http://www.whatsonstage.com/london-theatre/reviews/german-skerries-orange-tree-theatre_39915.html

The Guardian ★★★★

“James Perkins’s design captures the tufty roughness of this grassy wasteland”

“strong on atmosphere”

“beautifully understated”

http://www.theguardian.com/stage/2016/mar/07/german-skerries-review-robert-holman-orange-tree

The Arts Desk ★★★★

“something wonderfully clever and brilliant about Robert Holman’s 1977 play”

“beautifully rendered by designer James Perkins"

“a loving revival of a lovely play” 

http://www.theartsdesk.com/theatre/german-skerries-orange-tree-theatre

The Londonist ★★★★

“paints a subtle portrait of real life" 

“Designer James Perkins convinces us of our surroundings with an impressively realistic grassy bank that acts like a cross-section of a wider whole we can't see.”

“a delightful experience — as relevant now as when it was first performed in 1979.”

http://londonist.com/2016/03/a-beautiful-portrait-of-everyday-british-life-german-skerries-reviewed

Time Out ★★★★

“A still, beautiful forgotten classic”

http://www.timeout.com/london/theatre/german-skerries

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