Best Set Design Miami 2014 - Assassins
Michael McKeever's set for Zoetic Stage's Assassins must have been a fun place to show up to work for its cast of ten. After all, it's not often you get to spend a couple of hours a night playing around and firing blanks into a multitiered carnival booth, not to mention exhaling your last breath while collapsing onto a flawless replica of the official presidential seal of the United States. With its mix of jingoistic colors and iconography and its peeling wooden marquee reading "Take Your Shot," McKeever's set resembled both Coney Island parlor games and White House pomp and circumstance — finding a visual representation of the nexus of the assassins' low-rent delusions and their unseen victims' patriotic grandeur. It was also a fount of hidden pleasures, from the centrally positioned, rotating presidential portrait to the red-and-blue police sirens tucked away in crates to the noose atop the stairway, which helped create one of the show's funniest visual gags. This might sound like a dubious honor for McKeever, but the fact is, if anyone had the choice to die on any set, it would be this one.