Costume Design

What Does It Take to Be a Ballet Company’s Head of Wardrobe on Opening Night?

As head of wardrobe for the Joffrey Ballet, Ellie Cotey has her hands full when it comes to creating costumes from scratch for a full-length production. Managing a team of 50 builders, alterations, dress rehearsals, and of course, laundry, requires a strong leadership skillset. Dance Magazine chats with Cotey about her role as Head of Wardrobe and what a typical opening night’s schedule looks like. (Spoiler: The work begins early in the morning!) READ ARTICLE via www.dancemagazine.com

A Conversation with Costume Designer Dede Ayite

With a background studying theatre and behavioral neuroscience and a graduate degree in scenic design from Yale, how did Dede Aiyte carve her path to become a Broadwy costume design? Connect the dots with her here: READ ARTICLE via www.stage-directions.com

How the Phantom of the Opera’s Mask is Made

Saturday, January 26, 2019 was the 31st Anniversary of the Broaddway opening of The Phantom of the Opera. Here’s a backstage video about how the iconic mask is custom-made for each Phantom. – via www.stage-directions.com READ ARTICLE

Costume Designing an All New Mary Poppins

BY EMILY ZEMLER via www.backstage.com In “Mary Poppins Returns,” Sandy Powell was tasked with reimagining the look of a beloved character originated by Julie Andrews and now played by Emily Blunt. The three-time Oscar-winning costume designer, working alongside director Rob Marshall, put her own spin on the story’s fantastical, 1930s London setting. Here, Powell unpacks her challenges and inspiration for the film, and also discusses her polar opposite work in Yorgos Lanthimos’ period drama “The Favourite.” Did you feel any pressure to take inspiration from the original “Mary Poppins”? It wasn’t exactly pressure, because Rob had made it clear we weren’t actually doing anything like the original. It was a whole new story. So the only thing we had to take into consideration was Mary Poppins h...

The Marvelous 1950s Costumes of Marvelous Mrs Maisel

via www.thecostumerag.com Amy Sherman-Palladino’s Marvelous Mrs Maisel  is about a Jewish mother who explores her passions by becoming a comedian. The show uses 1950s fashion throughout the plot using colours and patterns to express both the glamour and austerity found in the post-war period. The 1950s costumes create an authentic portrayal of this time period, and illustrates Midge’s emotional journey as well. Costume designer Donna Zakowska told Mashable how important Midge’s wardrobe “was [as] an attempt to optimistically capture the spirit of a woman, who in spite of unfortunate events continues to assert her spirit to remain on her feet. Her love of clothes, detail and color would become tools for expressing her strength and identity. [We’re] re-examining the strength and complexity o...

Working in Wardrobe

via www.stage-directions.com Here’s a video from the American Theatre Wing that takes a look at the work of the Wardrobe Department, specifically for the current production of My Fair Lady at Lincoln Center Theater. The costumes are created to fulfill the epic world that a play or musical inhabits. It takes lots of organization, maintenance, and often creativity to get the performers ready for each and every scene (and maybe even a quick change during a scene). They interview Patrick Bevilacqua, Assistant Costume Designer / Wardrobe Supervisor, Jessica Firorella, Internal Costume Swing, and Dean Amato, Male Principal Dresser for My Fair Lady. The costumes are vast for the company of My Fair Lady at Lincoln Center Theater. They require multiple teams with various responsibilities to m...

Want my job? Set & Costume Design with Khadija Raza

BY TOM INNISS via www.voicemag.uk Linbury Prize winner Khadija Raza talks to Voice about the excitement and variation her job as a set and costume designer offers her. Could you first introduce yourself to the reader? My name is Khadija Raza and I’m a set and costume designer working in theatre. What does your job involve? Give us the typical outline of a day? My job has a lot of varied roles/responsibilities. As a designer I read and analyse the script/text that I’m starting with – in collaboration with a director – and design the world of the play through sketches, scale models and technical drawings. I also have to help realise the production, working alongside production managers and stage managers. Depending on the scale/ budget of the production, the realising...

A Look at the Masks and the Puppets in The Lion King

via www.stage-directions.com It was this week 21 years ago, Oct. 15, 1997 to be precise, that The Lion King played its first preview and audiences first saw the beautiful and intricate costumes, masks and puppetry so central to the narrative and to the unique experience of the production. Adam Savage and the team at Tested went backstage at The Lion King during its run in San Francisco in this video visit to the musical’s puppet shop, where puppet supervisor Michael Reilly walked them through the numerous intricate and varied puppets and masks used in the performance and showed how they’re maintained in their traveling workshop. The production and design credits for the show when it opened at the New Amsterdam Theatre were: Scenic Design by Richard Hudson Costume Design by Juli...

Shall I Clothe Thee for a Summer’s Day? Costuming Outdoor Shakespeare

BY BILLY MCENTEE via www.americantheatre.org Shakespeare’s characters aren’t the only ones weathering floods and tempests. Outdoor summer Shakespeare is an American institution alongside July 4th fireworks and lounging poolside. Across the country, as actors and audiences endure rain, heat, and bugs to present and partake of free professional performances of the Bard’s classics, one group of designers has a special challenge: costume designers, who must conceive innovative ways to protect actors, their clothes, and the integrity of the story. How does the process of working al fresco differ from being in more enclosed venues, and how do costumers think sustainably to preserve their designs night after night? “Designing for outdoor environments is challenging yet fascinating,” said Ying-Jun...

Register for the LiNK Grad School Auditions & Interviews! (Hosted by USITT & SETC)

Where Master’s Candidates and Recruiters Connect SETC and USITT partner each fall to bring graduate theatre degree programs together with people considering options for interviews, auditions, and information exchange. Connect with more than 50 programs across theatre disciplines including Acting, Design, Technology, and Management. Explore your options for advanced education and find your dream grad program in one convenient, affordable location. 5th Annual LiNK When: Nov. 9-11, 2018 Where:  Crowne Plaza Hotel Atlanta-Airport  |  Atlanta, GA For Candidates Register early with your resume, portfolio, and head shot for advance review by recruiters. $50 Early Registration: Aug. 1 – Sept. 12, 2018 $75 Late Registration: Sept. 13 – Oct. 24, 2018 $95 Onsite Registration: Onsite...

SNL Hair and Makeup Heads Reveal How They Create Their Weekly Transformations

BY CASEY MINK via www.backstage.com If you’ve ever marveled at a “Saturday Night Live” cast member’s transformation from parrot to politician in one commercial break, you should know the names Jodi Mancuso and Louie Zakarian, the sketch show’s longtime hair and makeup department heads. Just ahead of the television institution’s 43rd season finale, Mancuso and Zakarian—who have 12 Emmys between them—spoke with Backstage to break down what a show week typically looks like, how their work helps actors find and get into their many characters, and the one look creator Lorne Michaels deemed too shocking. How do you typically prepare for a show week? Louie Zakarian (makeup): It starts on Tuesdays, when the host comes in and we do promos. We do the table read on Wednesday; we go through something ...

The Challenges of Designing Costumes for HDTV

via thecostumerag.com You only need to take a look in your local department store to see the immense size and quality of modern television screens aimed at the common family. Ultra-high-definition has given every broadcast a strangely smooth quality full of contrast and impeccable detail. Unfortunately one of the production departments with the biggest tasks with rising to this new standard of television is the costume department who, if our poll on the state of the costume industry is anything to go by, probably can’t afford to see their work in 4K glory. Besides more intense scrutiny for details, the new technology requires intense lighting that can easily bleach out much of the costume work. Colours have to be bold, which also meansweathering and ageing effects have to be exaggerated. I...

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