The West Australian Ballet has been in the process of reinventing themselves as a world-class performing troupe, with performers, choreographers and artists from around the globe. Their emphasis on performing new ballets to an international standard was the main motivation behind their 2018 production of Bram Stoker’s ‘Dracula’. A traditional ballet with a modern twist, ‘Dracula’ was a risk, with the more risqué and violent elements of the production having the potential to turn off the traditional ballet audience. How to keep the ballet faithful while attracting a new audience?
Stoker, a custom display typeface, was designed to give the production a unique tone of voice. Much like the neo-classical production, it is a contemporary take on a classic, taking elements from blackletter and introducing elements from the ballet. Graceful, passionate, deadly and fanged, it was designed to balance the sweeping curves of a pirouette with the sharp end of a vampire’s bite. Paired with the blood-soaked palette, the identity of the production becomes a marriage of elegance and foreboding. Stoker was designed to suck.
'Dracula' won a Bronze Skull in Design Crafts: Best Typography at the 2018 PADC Skulls.
Client: West Australia Ballet
Design Director: Mel Radman
Creative Director: Josh Edge
Type Design: Joseph Dennis
Art Director: Luke Williams, Rikki Burns