Tracy Grant Lord

Set and Costume Design

“The design for The Crucible grew out of discussions with Colin and the themes central to the text. The community we see is separated from its wider world because of its beliefs, and it is this context I have sought to recreate.


Colin wanted a sense of danger, sterility, coldness and tension. The room is at once and alternately an attic, a long-room, a meeting room and a court; it can be an enclosed and very private space or it can be a very public place, unshielded from probing scrutiny. The space has been carved out of, or rather into an organic world; but wild nature still encroaches and looms large. It is also an imprisoned world, yet open, somewhat akin to a pen in which herded animals are kept. It is prevented from collapsing in on itself by a pole, symbolic of a flagpole, the standard bearer of a revered icon of state or church, reminding us that, then as today, these two collide and collude.


The design for The Crucible gives the company a safe, unique and flexible world within which to work, while providing the audience with strong visual images supporting Arthur Miller’s intentions and Colin McColl’s vision of this strong, stark work.”


Tracy designs for opera, ballet and theatre throughout New Zealand and Australia. Her work has been chosen to represent New Zealand at five Prague Quadrennials receiving the UNESCO Prize for Emerging Artists (1999) and a Jury Award (2003). She exhibited at World Stage Design Toronto (2005) was awarded a Winston Churchill Fellow (1987) and has a Bachelor of Spatial Design AUT (1996). She won Best Production Design at the St Kilda Film Festival (1999) for short film Possum and was a finalist in ‘Best Craft in Short Film Drama’ at the NZ Film and Television Awards in 1997. Highlights of her work include RNZB’s 50th Anniversary production of Romeo and Juliet which received an Olivier Award nomination for Best New Dance Production (2005). Her work for Auckland Theatre Company includes Arcadia, Dancing at Lughnasa, Masterclass, Wit, The Graduate, Travesties, A Streetcar Named Desire and High Society. Tracy is currently working on a new production of Cinderella for RNZB (August 2007) and The Glass Soldier for the Melbourne Theatre Company.