Richard Hay has designed Oregon Shakespeare Festival (OSF) theaters and sets for more than 50 years. In recent OSF seasons, Hay designed “Animal Crackers,” Coconuts” and “Tartuffe,” to name a few. He is currently finishing his design for “Anthony and Cleopatra.” This is the second of a two-part column. The first was published on March 5.
EH: You have designed sets for the entire Shakespeare canon?
RH: Actually I designed the canon twice. There are 36 plays in the canon. Some I have designed several times: Three of “As you Like It,” four of “Hamlet,” and a lot of the popular Shakespeare plays more than twice. I didn’t complete all 36 plays twice until last summer when we did “Richard III.” I had to wait a long time for that.
Richard Hay, legendary scenic designer at the Oregon Shakespeare Festival, has been with OSF since its inception. Besides designing sets for more than 200 plays at OSF, Hay designed the interiors of the three theaters: the Angus Bowmer Theatre, the Thomas Theatre and the Allen Elizabethan Theatre. We visited over lunch at the Standing Stone Brewery.
EH: How did your association with OSF begin?
RH: I was a student at Stanford, majoring in civil engineering and architecture at the time. But I spent all my spare time over in the Drama Department, and consequently got to know people there. I got to be very good friends with Bill Patton (who later became OSF’s executive director). This was in the early ’50s; he was doing lighting for the festival in the summer time. It was just a summer operation then. Continue reading Richard Hay’s vision on display at Ashland’s Oregon Shakespeare Festival→