I designed Chinglish at the Lyric Stage Company in 2012.
The biggest challenge of was balancing the need for clear supertitles for moments when the dialog is in Chinese with the desire for projections to be an artistic element of the show. I worked with the scenic designer, Dahlia Al Habieli, to make the surface for the supertitles integrated with the set, so that when supertitles were not required, it was not just a giant screen above the stage. There were also moments where the show left reality, and I was able to enhance these moments with cloud-like textures on the scenic header.
At the end of the show the script calls for Chinese characters to appear behind the main actor. We were able to make it a very powerful moment where instead, all the characters in the show were blanketed in Chinese characters, reinforcing the idea that “…we’ll all have to keep struggling – with Chinglish.”