Costumes show role in FC theatre productions

By Savannah Schroering

After a long day of school, Henry Miller happily converses with his theatre friends before walking into the costume shop. It is lined with fabrics, sewing machines and obvious hard work. Each shelf is stuffed with countless different kinds of fabric and costumes in progress are hung on racks in the shop, waiting to be finished or fit on the performer. He waits his turn before getting measured and fitted in his costume for his role as Howard in Moon Over Buffalo.

“My character is kind of a nerd, so it’s fun to wear clothes that fit his personality,” said Miller.

The costumes are what often create a story and the characters in it. They match up with certain details of the play, such as time period, region and even different worlds.

“They definitely help you get into character a lot more. It helps you step out of yourself and be someone else, since it’s not something you’d usually wear,” said junior Sarah Denison.

Many students, such as Denison, enjoy the costumes because they like to wear things that are different from their outfits they wear on a regular basis. 

“It’s like Halloween every day on stage. You get to put something fun on that you would not wear anywhere else,” said Denison.

In comparison to Denison, sophomore Mitchell Lewis said that the costumes help him put on the persona of someone else as well.

“Costumes help me give an image to my character,” said Lewis. “They help you get into the story lot. I feel like I them in a way.”

Every character is different in each of the plays, therefore there needs to be different costumes and clothes for everyone.

“It sets the mood for the character. Depending on what you wear, it gives the audience the idea of who your character is,” said freshman Stevie Griffin.

Although costumes give the play a crucial image of the characters, there needs to be many hours of work put into them some problems can arise from them.

One of the challenges for the director and seamstresses comes from designing and constructing the costume.

“From my perspective, the challenge is getting the image from inside my head and getting them to Mrs. Vicki,” said theatre director Robbie Steiner. “Since I’m not good at drawing, communicating is difficult to me.”

The ideas of the costumes are passed down to Mrs Vicki and they begin to start the production of the costumes.

“My job is to implement the ideas into a costume. Since we have a big supply of costumes, a lot of times it’s just matching the clothes with their time period,” said wardrobe manager Vicki Hays. “If you’re doing the musical 1776, the wouldn’t look right or feel right to the audience if they were wearing clothes from 2015.”

The supply of costumes is in a large room filled to the brim with outfits and props of past musicals. The theatre program rents their abundance of garments to other high schools to help them with their productions and to benefit the theature program at FC. 

“Most schools are on a tight budget and we rent a low cost. The costumes fit better because they’re all high schoolers and it makes extra money for our theatre department,” said Hays.  

The costume department saves money by recycling costumes. The expense and work of making costumes be a challenge, so the option of avoiding creating them from scratch is seen as ideal.

“We do it because of the expenses. The costumes are used for several years, some being 25 years old,” said Hays.

With the plays and costumes come production fees. They usually charge 150 dollars for main stage productions, but most students gladly pay them.

“The costume ladies take a lot of time and effort in making the costumes so I think we should be able to give them something in return,” said Griffin.

Overall, the costumes add an aspect to the play that is needed to create a good story. Costumes make characters seem real, especially when the whole world of the play comes together.

“Costumes really help define a character and shows their characteristics,” said Miller. “It’s fun to get to dress as someone else.”

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