Quick Questions with Zahra Mansouri (Set & Costume Designer, ‘Character’ & ‘Alice in Wonderland’


What do you like best about working on Alice in Wonderland and Character?

Alice was a favourite childhood book, so it’s having the opportunity to rework it, as well as staying true to the aspects we know and love (younger people can see a reimagining of the piece, but adults can delight in finding details from the original). With Character I like the fact that it’s such a different challenge; the fun is in creating a reality that relates to real people and pinning down that level of detail in set and costume.

What was the last project you worked on?

The curious tale of Pablo Picasso at the Brockley Jack – a surreal piece about two historic events merging – Pablo Picasso discovering his Art whilst in prison for stealing the Mona Lisa. Absolute madness, with many of the props I made based on art of the time, oversized objects and detailed pieces, were a joy to make.

Besides Alice and Character, what’s your favourite past production? Blackshaw’s adaptation of Gormenghast (another favourite book of mine). I had a whole church to create the world in, whilst of course being loyal to Peake fans, I created detailed costume designs that really pinned down the larger then life characters within the story.

What’s the best play/show/concert you’ve ever been to?

Best show I have been to was Faust at the Colosseum, by Terry Gillingham. We all loved his animations for Monty Python, and to actually see that level of interchanging madness within an opera was spectacular.

Not a lot of people know that…

It’s bloody hard work convincing young actors to wear their trousers on their waist and not round their arse if they want to successfully look like they are in a period drama.

What’s your guilty pleasure?

Working in my pyjamas whilst listening to 80s power rock.

What really grinds your gears?

Young male actors arguing the toss about where the waistband should be worn if they are in a period piece.

See Zahra’s work at www.zahramansouri.com

Quick Questions with Clare Harlow (Freya, Character)


What do you like best about playing your character in Character?

The script is just brilliant. Flo, the writer, is seriously talented.

What are rehearsals like?

I keep getting the giggles because Angela, who plays Michelle, is too funny.

What was the last project you worked on?

A short film called One In Ten, playing a woman suffering from post-natal depression.

Besides this show, what’s your favourite past role?

Jane in Jane Eyre or Abigail in The Crucible.

What’s the best play/show/concert you’ve ever been to?

Too many to choose from, but the best thing I’ve seen this year so far has been The Pass at The Royal Court.

Not a lot of people know that…

The hatstand we use in the play is mine and I carried it across London on three different tube lines to get it to the venue.

What’s your guilty pleasure?  

A long lie in.

What really grinds your gears?

The Northern Line really is the worst.

WAFF Cast Announcement – Character & Alice in Wonderland


I’m super excited to announce that after a long audition process, we have cast our Wandsworth Arts Festival & Fringe 2014 shows.


Character by Florence Vincent

Michelle – Angela Ferns

Freya – Clare Harlow


Alice in Wonderland by Richard Stratton

Alice – Emily Rae

The Mad Hatter – Dean Brammall

The Cheshire Cat – Natasha Green

Tweedle Dum/Soldier 2/Door 4 – Liam Fleming

Tweedle Dee/Soldier 1/Door 1 – Alexander Pankhurst

The Queen of Hearts/Shopkeeper – Angela Ferns

The White Rabbit/The Caterpillar – Clare Harlow


AND our lovely Design/Tech team is (thus far) as follows:

Director – Ellie Pitkin

Assistant Director – Oliver Gordon

Stage Manager – Hannah Wiltshire

Sound Designer/Tech Op – Andrew Crane

Set & Costume Designer – Zahra Mansouri

Set & Costume Assistant – Michelle Bristow

Publicity Design – Bruce Asher

Production Administrator – Nicole Locke

Project Manager – Vikki Weston

Production Assistant – Zak Thomas

Publicity, PR & Marketing Manager – Barney Barron

Social Media – Stanley Walton


– Ellie