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By Design: Derek McLane’s Sets For Moulin Rouge

Moulin Rouge! The Musical, based on the 2001 film by Baz Luhrmann, transports us to Paris, France where Christian, an English poet/writer, falls in love with Satine, star of the Moulin Rouge cabaret in Montmartre. The musical, directed by Alex Timbers, has a score composed of hit songs of the last 50 years, including iconic songs from the film, as well as music from the past 15 years, since the film came out. The design team comprises: Tony Award-winner Derek McLane, sets; Tony Award-winner Catherine Zuber, costumes; two-time Tony Award-nominee Justin Townsend, lighting; and Tony Award-winner Peter Hylenski, sound. Read about the lighting design here, and check out the lighting plots.

Live Design chats with McLane about his scenic design for Moulin Rouge! The Musical, which opened on July 25, 2019 at Broadway’s Al Hirschfield Theatre. His sets—from a large blue elephant to the emblematic red windmill (the Moulin Rouge)—embody the legendary cabaret theatre, considered an icon of Parisian nightlife since 1889, and whisk the audience off to fin-de-siècle Paris.

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