By Iris Perrin
2003 Show Wardrobe Mistress
Celebrating twenty years of Gang Show in Inverness is indeed a
marvellous feat, but itís not only the singers and dancers on
stage who should be applauded. Twenty years of Gang Show also
means twenty years of costume and make-up, music, props, and
everything else that goes on behind the scenes of a successful
musical variety show.
As an artistic and creative person with a particular
love for theatre and the arts, I was flattered and excited to be given
the role of Wardrobe Mistress for the 2003 Inverness Show. For me,
fabulous costumes are always the "wow" factor in any theatrical
production and I decided from the outset that this Show would be no
Since early 2002, many hours of discussion, colour
co-ordinating, designing, measuring and fabric hunting have been going
on behind the scenes. The ladies of the wardrobe team are now
instantly recognised by the staff of Claire Fabrics and Remnant Kings,
not to mention most of the charity shops in Inverness! A lot of hard
work goes into creating costumes for a cast of 130 people - and there
is much more to it than you might initially think.
For example, when we go to buy fabric we have to
consider what the people wearing the costume will actually be doing on
stage. If they are costumes for a dance number, we have to discuss
with the dance director about the moves and steps the cast will be
making, so the fabric we choose and the design we create allows them
to move freely.
Something else we have to think about for dance numbers
is the style of headdress or hats being used. We have a group of
tiller girls in our opening number and have had to experiment with
various different creations to get something which will actually stay
on their heads whilst they jump around and high-kick their legs! Next
time you see those lines of tiller girls on television with their
wonderful, three feet high, headdresses - just try to imagine what has
been done to keep them on!
Itís not only fabric that is used for costumes either!
McDonalds (the fast food people) in Inverness have kindly donated
fifty of their 'egg box' type drink holders for us to use. What on
earth for? Well just you wait and see how wonderful these drink
holders look when they have been sprayed gold!
And, you know those shelves full of sparkly, glittery
last-of-the-Christmas-season flowers and garlands which twinkle sadly
in shop corners come the second week in January? Guess whoís been
buying them all up at ridiculous, bargain prices!
Costuming a Show is a huge, sometimes expensive,
creative and very important task. To see it through, a combination of
skills and talents are required - and in our happy band of stitchers,
creators and titivators, we have the lot!