PACO AZORÍN

Scenographer and stage director

Paco Azorín

Despite having an extensive professional career with over 150 scenic designs for opera, theatre, dance or musicals, Paco Azorín (Yecla, 1974) still defines himself as “a boy”. A boy who got interested in the performing arts thanks to the freedom offered to him by a small box of biscuits where as a child he could allow his imagination to take flight and play at being the creator he would become as an adult: “It was a window on another dimension, a dimension much more interesting than life itself.” The most scenographic of directors and the most director-like of scenographers, as he defines himself, trained at the Institut del Teatre. Since then he has become a creator with one of the most extensive and varied careers in the performing arts today. His activity, however, particularly focuses on the field of opera and zarzuela, influenced by the passion of one of his uncles, a great music lover, for these genres.

This infinite curiosity has taken him to erase the borders between his work as a scenographer and as a stage director, adopting the two roles together in many of his productions. He explains that the scenographer works with stable, solid materials while the director works with human material, far more volatile and equally interesting. As a scenographer he is especially involved in the dramaturgy of the space, in its narrative capacity, while, as a stage director, he confesses that he always starts his work with a spatial metaphor. Two different approaches to performance that, in Paco’s case, seem to fit together naturally.

Whatever the professional position he adopts in any process of creation, Paco is sure that if anything makes this process exciting, it is the dialogue established between all the agents involved. For him, the director is never a totemic figure: “The director-dictator forms part of the 20th century.” He feels comfortable being in the shoes of the director as the person charged with orchestrating the talents of the whole team.

Although he carries out much of his artistic work in the world of opera ‒ a genre that, very often, still seems rooted in the codes and dogmas of past centuries ‒ he is convinced of the need to demystify the performance space. He convincingly argues that “you cannot do 21st century opera in an 18th or 19th century building.” He tells us that, from his point of view, opera has forgotten everything interesting provided by 20th century avant-gardes and that is destined to perform a triple somersault from the codes of the 19th century to those of the 21st. Faithful to his idea of the need to define the stage and its relationship with the audience, he argues that opera must cease to be an elitist genre if it does not want to disappear. All these thoughts, characteristic of the professional who regards any creative process with innocence and curiosity, are evident in many of his projects. His productions always include technological elements and contemporary references to bring classic themes and characters to the audience and to establish a prolific dialogue between what we call “classics” and the contemporary perspective. Good examples of this dialogue could be his versions of Tosca (Gran Teatre del Liceu, 2014) and Fuenteovejuna (Ópera de Oviedo, 2018).

Talking to Paco, it is easy to see that, for him, life and the stage are absolutely connected. He tells us that recently he has been looking inwards in search of the questions and conflicts that will become the creative engine that will shape his projects. For him, the stage is the best place to learn new things rather than the place to recognise everything already known. Once again the curious outlook of the boy who still has everything to discover becomes apparent. This idea of freedom comes up repeatedly in our talk: we live in a world where we only find second hand ideas, so the artist has to be militant about his freedom of thought. Only by exercising this freedom (the mother of all other freedoms ‒ of expression, demonstration, etc. ‒, he says), will every artist be able to achieve, if only for an instant, the plenitude of his or her creative identity. “Without ritual or spirituality there is no action or performing art.”

You can consult Paco Azorín’s projects on his website:
www.pacoazorin.com

Paco Azorín ©2019

Capa video

PACO AZORÍN

Paco Azorín

PACO AZORIN

Scenographer and stage director

1992-1996
Scenography studies at the Institut del Teatre of the Diputació de Barcelona

 

Awards, among others

“Serra d’O” Critics Award 2004
For the most interesting contribution for “his aesthetic diversity and the multiplicity of
formats he has adapted to the most varied productions and spaces”

Butaca Award 2004 for Best Scenography
for LEAR

Generalitat Valenciana Award 2005 for Best Scenography
for Sopa de pollastre amb ordi

Josep Solbes Award 2005 of the Government of the Valencia Region for Best Lighting
for Sopa de pollastre amb ordi

“Públics” de Tarragona Award 2006 for Best Scenography
for El mètode Grönholm

Generalitat Valenciana Award 2008 for Best Scenography
for Els embolics de Scapin

Butaca Award 2009 for Best Scenography
for La casa de Bernarda Alba

Ceres Award 2013
for El veneno del teatro

Amics de l’Òpera de Palma Award 2017 for Best Production
for María Moliner

Cerino Award 2018
for Filoctetes

 

Since 1996 he has created over 200 stage designs and 100 lighting designs with creators such as Lluís Pasqual (Hamlet, La tempestad, Mòbil, El caballero de Olmedo, Els feréstecs, Quitt), Carme Portaceli (Lear, Sopa de pollastre amb ordi, Un enemic del poble, L’auca del senyor Esteve), Sergi Belbel (El mètode Grönholm), Víctor Ullate (Samsara, Carmen, El amor brujo), Joan Castells (Ran del camí, Ram de mar, Preversions), Coco Comín (Grease, Chicago), Ernesto Caballero (Rinoceronte, El jardín de los cerezos, Galileo Galilei, Inconsolable), Miguel del Arco (Refugio, Fuenteovejuna, Federico Hacia Lorca); Mario Gas (Calígula, El veneno del teatro, Sócrates) in theatres such as the Teatre Lliure, Teatre Nacional de Catalunya, Centro Dramático Nacional (Madrid), Teatro Español (Madrid), Teatres de la Generalitat Valenciana, Opéra National de Paris (Il prigioniero), Gran Teatre del Liceu (Le nozze di Figaro), Festival Grec (Barcelona), Festival de Otoño (Madrid) and Teatro Arriaga (Bilbao).

As a stage director, he has worked at the Festival Shakespeare (Hamlet, el dia dels assassinats), Centro Dramático Nacional (Escuadra hacia la muerte), Festival de Mérida (Salomé, Julio César, Samson et Dalila), Gran Teatre del Liceu (Tosca, La voix humaine, Una voce in off, The monster at the maze), Teatro de la Maestranza (Con los pies en la luna, Tosa), Festival de Peralada (Otello, La Traviata) and Macerata Opera Festival (Otello). In 2003 he founded the Festival Shakespeare, the only festival in Spain devoted entirely to the work of the English playwright. He was artistic director of the festival during the first four years.

In the field of teaching, he gives master classes and lectures at the Universidad Internacional de Andalucía, Universitat de Barcelona, Universitat de València, Escola Elisava, Universidad Pontificia de Medellín, Rcr Arquitectes International Workshop of Scenography.

In terms of occasional design of events, he regularly works with Madrid City Council ("Amigo Awards", "Christmas Campaigns", artistic director of the Olympic candidature for Madrid 2012), as well as companies such as SEAT (Golden Dealer Awards).

Capa cv

Capa pdf


Paco Azorín

PACO AZORIN

Scenographer and stage director

1992-1996
Scenography studies at the Institut del Teatre of the Diputació de Barcelona

 

Awards, among others

“Serra d’O” Critics Award 2004
For the most interesting contribution for “his aesthetic diversity and the multiplicity of
formats he has adapted to the most varied productions and spaces”

Butaca Award 2004 for Best Scenography
for LEAR

Generalitat Valenciana Award 2005 for Best Scenography
for Sopa de pollastre amb ordi

Josep Solbes Award 2005 of the Government of the Valencia Region for Best Lighting
for Sopa de pollastre amb ordi

“Públics” de Tarragona Award 2006 for Best Scenography
for El mètode Grönholm

Generalitat Valenciana Award 2008 for Best Scenography
for Els embolics de Scapin

Butaca Award 2009 for Best Scenography
for La casa de Bernarda Alba

Ceres Award 2013
for El veneno del teatro

Amics de l’Òpera de Palma Award 2017 for Best Production
for María Moliner

Cerino Award 2018
for Filoctetes

 

Since 1996 he has created over 200 stage designs and 100 lighting designs with creators such as Lluís Pasqual (Hamlet, La tempestad, Mòbil, El caballero de Olmedo, Els feréstecs, Quitt), Carme Portaceli (Lear, Sopa de pollastre amb ordi, Un enemic del poble, L’auca del senyor Esteve), Sergi Belbel (El mètode Grönholm), Víctor Ullate (Samsara, Carmen, El amor brujo), Joan Castells (Ran del camí, Ram de mar, Preversions), Coco Comín (Grease, Chicago), Ernesto Caballero (Rinoceronte, El jardín de los cerezos, Galileo Galilei, Inconsolable), Miguel del Arco (Refugio, Fuenteovejuna, Federico Hacia Lorca); Mario Gas (Calígula, El veneno del teatro, Sócrates) in theatres such as the Teatre Lliure, Teatre Nacional de Catalunya, Centro Dramático Nacional (Madrid), Teatro Español (Madrid), Teatres de la Generalitat Valenciana, Opéra National de Paris (Il prigioniero), Gran Teatre del Liceu (Le nozze di Figaro), Festival Grec (Barcelona), Festival de Otoño (Madrid) and Teatro Arriaga (Bilbao).

As a stage director, he has worked at the Festival Shakespeare (Hamlet, el dia dels assassinats), Centro Dramático Nacional (Escuadra hacia la muerte), Festival de Mérida (Salomé, Julio César, Samson et Dalila), Gran Teatre del Liceu (Tosca, La voix humaine, Una voce in off, The monster at the maze), Teatro de la Maestranza (Con los pies en la luna, Tosa), Festival de Peralada (Otello, La Traviata) and Macerata Opera Festival (Otello). In 2003 he founded the Festival Shakespeare, the only festival in Spain devoted entirely to the work of the English playwright. He was artistic director of the festival during the first four years.

In the field of teaching, he gives master classes and lectures at the Universidad Internacional de Andalucía, Universitat de Barcelona, Universitat de València, Escola Elisava, Universidad Pontificia de Medellín, Rcr Arquitectes International Workshop of Scenography.

In terms of occasional design of events, he regularly works with Madrid City Council (“Amigo Awards”, “Christmas Campaigns”, artistic director of the Olympic candidature for Madrid 2012), as well as companies such as SEAT (Golden Dealer Awards).