At the turn of the 20th century, the theories of the Swiss stage designer Adolphe Appia and the English actor and designer Edward Gordon Craig called for symbolism and voiced a strong reaction against the naturalism of the Meiningen Company and the Moscow Art Theatre.

Appia advocated that stage costume evoke and suggest but never copy historical lines. The forms of the costumes and their decorations were based on traditional Russian folk dress, though that dress was transformed and made uniquely of their epoch by the jagged influence of Cubism.

Avant-garde artists of many of the flourishing movements of modern art—Cubists, Constructivistsand Surrealists —brought about an acceleration of innovation in design concepts, which in previous centuries had evolved gradually throughout Europe.

Appia, Craig, and Diaghilev led others to experiment. As modern dance evolved, its rapid rhythms and pace offered the costume designer new challenges and scope for original work. The productions of Merce Cunningham and Alwin Nikolais in New York City presented unique shapes that attempted to express the exploration of time and space.

Nikolais made his costumes part of a total stage design, a theatrical abstraction of the way he saw humankind, as part of a socioeconomic mechanism—an agreeable but not a central part. Accused of dehumanizing the dancers, he maintained that their role was to be an expression of a greater state of being for humankind, of the experience of living in a world of motion, sound, colour, and action that strongly affects them and is affected by them.

The rise of the American musical owes much to the close collaboration of composers, writers, and choreographers with designers. The designs must capture the spirit of the music and lyrics, interpret the period, heighten the characterization of the actors, and help the dancers in their varied, often athletic routines. The radical creative talents of the German playwright Bertolt Brecht created new production concepts and styles; the clothes worn conveyed to the audience in a satirical fashion not only a characterization of the wearer but also his social status.

Another compelling force in 20th-century experimental theatre, Jerzy Grotowskiconceived his production of Akropolis at the Polish Laboratory Theatre in as a poetic paraphrase of an extermination camp. There is no hero—and no individuality—among the characters.

The costumes were bags full of holes covering naked bodies, and the holes were lined with material suggesting torn flesh; wooden shoes covered the feet, and anonymous berets the heads.

The second half of the 20th century was a time of social upheaval throughout the world, but particularly in the United States and Europe, where costume design reflected the changes. Regardless of how societal changes affected the manner in which stories were told in the theatre, the one constant across the diverse range of presentational modes was the design dictum that costume had to express the mood and spirit of a play.

That design philosophy persisted through the turn of the 21st century. In Japanese Noh and Kabuki theatre, almost every element of a production is dictated by tradition. Noh costumes, which evolved into their modern form in the 14th and 15th centuries, are no exception.In this comedic musical revival, she plays Lily Garland, formerly known as Mildred Plotka, the glam Hollywood starlet who boards an N. However, we were also pleased to see it earned a Best Costume Design of a Musical nomination.

Broadway favorite William Ivey Long conceived the looks behind this two-and-a-half hour '30s-era show. Several weeks ago, we caught up with Ivey Long over the phone—while he was sewing on the wedding dress look in the upper lobby no less—to get the scoop on the throwback costumes. Turns out, the late s is his most favorite period to design for. So how did he make Chenoweth and her fellow castmates stand out? Then she turns into the fabulous screen siren Lily Garland.

How did you approach the transformation? What he remembers is this little, non-descript working girl. But he saw talent and potential in her. Then she miraculously transforms into a star in this production number called "Veronique.

For the rest of the musical, you have her dressed in soft, glowing pink tones. Why is that? I tried to find the colors that would make her skin just glow. I wanted her to look like the inside of a mother of pearl. If you want it to be a rosy irresistible glow, you use soft pinks. And of course, Lilys are white. Lily is a hint of what to put her in. Were you going for a timeless look? It features an empire cut with see-through eyelash chiffon and little satin squares. She looks like one long drink of water.

You want the audience to appreciate that she is a sinuous, sexy, alluring, complete superstar screen siren. Without compromising the story, you have to choose period elements that are timeless. What was your inspiration? It looks like a fish scale design that goes from very small to larger, and it echoes the wallpaper on the wall in the train compartment. Fur would have been too heavy. Then she wears a sequin gold gown underneath.

This is how my mind works! Find tickets for On the Twentieth Century on roundabouttheatre. The production runs until July 5, Save Pin FB ellipsis More. Image zoom. Joan Marcus.Among the Theatre and Performance collections there are over 3, stage costumes and accessories - ranging from complete outfits to individual headdresses. All are a tribute to the creativity and skills of designers and costume makers from the mid 18th century to today, in every kind of live performance - drama, opera, dance, musicals, pantomime, rock and pop, music hall, cabaret, circus.

In the 19th century, when realism was the predominant style, the scenery was usually designed by the scene painters. Costumes could be devised by a combination of performer and maker or drawn by a specialist and made by the theatre workshops and outworkers. The 20th century saw the emergence of the career designer, and then the setting up of training courses. But stage design is still an uncertain job and even today, designers often combine theatre work with a career as a painter or teacher.

These treasures demonstrate the imagination, knowledge, skill and ingenuity of the designers, and the makers who translate their two-dimensional designs into three-dimensional forms. Yet only in close-up can the inventiveness and resourcefulness of designer and maker be really appreciated.

Colours which seem garish in daylight soften under strong stage light. Costumes also have to be extremely well constructed to survive the strains of performance and many costumes bear the scars of a long life.

20th century theatre costumes

Fashionable clothes may only be worn a few times, but in a successful stage production a costume is worn every night for months or years.

The clothes must stand up to robust handling, quick changes, theatre grime and the sweat generated by nerves and the incredible heat of the stage light. Museum no. Once a play and its director have been chosen, a creative team is selected.

This includes the designer and, according to the type of show, composer, choreographer and conductor. The physical look of a show is decided on by the director or choreographer for a dance work in consultation with the designer. A design is produced for each set and character; the selected clothes and colour convey information about the character - personality, age, status, occupation, nationality, mood.

The designer has to be able to visualise how each individual costume will fit into an overall stage picture, giving each its proper place, be it for a leading actor or a walk-on part.

Costume of the 20th century and beyond

Each individual design must fit into the overall concept while taking into consideration the performer who will wear the costume and what movements they have to make, and also the budget and the scale of the theatres in which the production will play.

The actual design is a working drawing for the maker. This can be an evocative sketch, the most detailed, annotated drawing or diagram, a collage or a computer graphic. If the designer knows exactly which fabrics and trimmings he or she wants used, swatches are attached to the drawings; other designers might discuss matters with the costume makers or if they are known and trustedleave these decisions to them.

Some designs are a representation of real clothes and the drawings are straightforward, without stylisation or special presentation.

Other designers are more impressionistic, evoking rather than depicting the finished costume, often working closely with the makers. Leading costumiers Carl Bonn and Colin Mackenzie found the vaguest designs most satisfying to work on:.

What are you doing? Designers also have to consider the technical elements of their costumes. For example, designing for partially-clad showgirls poses special problems, including which parts of the body to highlight and how, and which to conceal, for how long and when.

During the s and s, nudity became more acceptable both in public and performance topless waitresses and performers first appeared in the s, The Sun published Page 3 Girls in and the first topless model in Cobb focused the toplessness by surrounding the breasts with elaborate sleeves, high imaginative headdresses and witty g-strings, all relating to the particular theme.

The elaborate, towering headdresses were precise constructions, perfectly balanced so long as the wearer moved and stood correctly.Search this Guide Search. Research Starter: Theatre. Need Assistance? Find Your Librarian. Schedule a Research Appointment.

Today's Hours :. Databases For Research Articles:.

20th century theatre costumes

Art Full Text Index, abstracts, and full text for articles in art. Art Full Text [ ] EBSCO interface offers full text plus abstracts and indexing of an international array of peer-selected publications; now with expanded coverage of Latin American, Canadian, Asian and other non-Western art, new artists, contemporary art, exhibition reviews, and feminist criticism.

Full-text coverage for selected periodicals is also included. In addition to articles, Art Full Text indexes reproductions of works of art that appear in indexed periodicals. Art Index Retrospective, Art Index Retrospective,provides users access to over half a century of art literature covering fine, decorative, and commercial art.

Content includes high-quality indexing of nearly publications, many of which are peer-reviewed, and citations of over 25, book reviews. It is a comprehensive bibliographic and full text database covering the entire spectrum of television and film. The database provides cover-to-cover indexing and abstracts for more than publications and selected coverage of more thanas well as full text for more than 70 journals and nearly 50 books. The database has been designed for use by a diverse audience that includes film scholars, college students, and general viewers.

IBTD with Full Text is a multicultural and inter-disciplinary research tool for theater students, educators and professionals.

The ARTstor Digital Library also includes a set of software tools to view, present, and manage images for research and teaching purposes. ARTstor Theatre, Dance and Performance Art This page highlights Artstor content related to theater and dance, including images of costumes, venues, and staged performances from around the world, as well as portraits and performance shots of notable playwrights, theater directors, choreographers, set and costume designers, actors, and dancers.

ARTstor Fashion and Costume This page highlights Artstor content related to fashion and costume, including images of historical fashion, costumes, designers, and fashion shows. ARTstor Decorative Arts This page highlights Artstor content related to western and non-western decorative arts, including a varied selection of images of furniture, interiors, tableware, textiles, ceramics, and silver.

Met Opera on Demand More than Met performances. Dozens of Live in HD productions, classic telecasts from the s, '80s, '90s, and '00s, and hundreds of radio broadcasts dating back to Play Index Index to more than 30, plays written from Antiquity to the present and published from to the present; includes mysteries, pageants, plays in verse, puppet performances, radio and television plays, and classic drama.

20th century theatre costumes

All Play master records contain a link to the results of an Internet metasearch of specially selected Web sites to link to full text, criticism, and other useful information. Literary Reference Center A rich full-text literary database covering all genres and timeframes.

It includes thousands of synopses, critical essays, book reviews, literary journals and author biographies, plus full-text classic novels, short stories and poems. Literary Reference Center is a comprehensive database that provides a broad spectrum of information on thousands of authors and their works across literary disciplines and timeframes.

LRC also includes full text of selected classic and contemporary poems and short stories, and of classic novels. As reference material, LRC includes full text of a number of literary encyclopedia and guides. The Director's Toolkit by Robin Schraft. Theatrical Design and Production by J. Helpful Websites. With more than regional editors across the world, The Theatre Times aims to be the most wide-reaching and comprehensive theatre news source online. Playbill is the theatre-lover's go-to source for the latest news, interviews, photos, videos and more.This famous costume pictures were published in weekly editions in the years between and A total of sheets appeared with each 4 costume pictures from the different fashion eras.

The people and their costumes were often presented in scenic stagings. The images appeared as black and white or colored woodcut and served next to the function as teaching images for the lower and middle classes of society as a wall decoration.

The illustration of the costumes is one of the best ever created. The drawings are shown a maximum of detail and lifelike reproduction. The costume images were later bound as books and republished. Accordingly, the costume templates are ideal for an introductory-style search. What we call today the fast changing fashion, consisted of mankind in earlier decades, in larger time intervals. The level of detail in the context of costume eras is extremely high.

For example, the now-forgotten flea fur, unthinkable today. During the Middle Ages in the face of rudimentary hygiene, an indispensable fashion accessory. Used by the citizen up to the queen. Also faith is reflected in the details again, for example in the form of amulets that were worn as jewelry or necklaces.

Juli Many well-known artists made on his behalf to special costume drawings, which were then published among others also in Munich pictures sheet. He also founded a now-famous costume library, which was later transferred to the Museum of Applied Arts. Source Wikipedia. Friedrich Hottenroth was a German national customs and traditions researcher, lithographer, painter and author.

He illustrated his costume descriptions itself.

20th century theatre costumes

For this he went with his drawing utensils on longer walks through the villages. In his books, he points to the problem of how hard it is for him to find original models in the villages.Western theater tradition has its foundations in the Greek celebrations performed in the sixth century B. The revels dances, songs, and choral responses evolved into spoken drama in B. The result was dialogue. Another playwright, Aeschylus B.

Opera costume

It consisted of a long, sleeved, patterned tunic, a stylized mask for instant character recognition, and a pair of high-soled shoes called corthunae. All of these garments were exclusively for theatrical use.

One cannot act the hero in everyday wear. Actors in Greek comedies also wore masks to indicate which characters they portrayed. Additionally, they would often add exaggerated body parts, padded bottoms or stomachs, and oversize phalluses to heighten the comic effect. Short tunics, much like those worn by ordinary citizens, were thought appropriate to comedy. Although the Romans added their own twists, the costume conventions established by the Greeks essentially remained the same until the fall of the Roman Empire, when Western theater virtually disappeared for eight hundred years.

When theater reemerged, it did so, ironically, in the context of the church. The Christian church was the sworn enemy of the drama perceiving it to be both immodest and akin to devil-worshiping.

Theatrical Costume

But, since services were performed in Latin, which fewer and fewer parishioners could understand, priests had to devise a way to dramatize the liturgy. From the fifth century C. As they became more elaborate, they moved into the market square. Costumes worn in the early religious dramas were ecclesiastical garments. As the scripts became more secular, often involving townspeople in addition to the clergy, lay performers assumed responsibility for any costume pieces not owned by the church.

Contemporary religious art provided inspiration for such characters as Daniel, Herod, the Virgin Mary, and assorted devils. It was during the Renaissance that production elements, both scenery and costume, came to be even more important than the text. Throughout Europe, the nobility staged lavish court masques and pageants to entertain their guests. Costumes depicted gods, animals, and mythological creatures, as well as such emotions as hope and joy. Designers for these festivities included Leonardo da Vinci and Inigo Jones.

Commedia dell'arte, a form of popular street comedy, emerged in Italy during the sixteenth century. Groups of itinerant actors presented largely improvised plays throughout Italy and Europe. Like the Greek comedies to which commedia is thought to be linkedcommedia actors portrayed stock characters identifiable by their masks and by their traditional costumes.

Pantaloon, the archetypal doddering old man, was often dressed in the wide trousers that now bear his name. The wily servant Brighella had a coat of horizontal green stripes, the forerunner of nineteenth-century British livery.

Other comic characters include Arlecchino, or Harlequin, Il Dottore, a pedantic academic always dressed in black, and Il Capitano, a cowardly Spaniard. The serious characters in commedia, two pair of lovers and a servant girl, wore contemporary clothing.Western theater tradition has its foundations in the Greek celebrations performed in the sixth century b.

Ohio University Libraries

The revels dances, songs, and choral responses evolved into spoken drama in b. The result was dialogue. Another playwright, Aeschylus — b. It consisted of a long, sleeved, patterned tunic, a stylized mask for instant character recognition, and a pair of high-soled shoes called corthunae. All of these garments were exclusively for theatrical use. One cannot act the hero in everyday wear. Actors in Greek comedies also wore masks to indicate which characters they portrayed. Additionally, they would often add exaggerated body parts, padded bottoms or stomachs, and oversize phalluses to heighten the comic effect.

Short tunics, much like those worn by ordinary citizens, were thought appropriate to comedy. Although the Romans added their own twists, the costume conventions established by the Greeks essentially remained the same until the fall of the Roman Empirewhen Western theater virtually disappeared for eight hundred years.

When theater reemerged, it did so, ironically, in the context of the church. The Christian church was the sworn enemy of the drama perceiving it to be both immodest and akin to devil-worshiping.

But, since services were performed in Latin, which fewer and fewer parishioners could understand, priests had to devise a way to dramatize the liturgy. From the fifth century c. As they became more elaborate, they moved into the market square. Costumes worn in the early religious dramas were ecclesiastical garments. As the scripts became more secular, often involving townspeople in addition to the clergy, lay performers assumed responsibility for any costume pieces not owned by the church.

Contemporary religious art provided inspiration for such characters as Daniel, Herod, the Virgin Maryand assorted devils. It was during the Renaissance that production elements, both scenery and costume, came to be even more important than the text.

Throughout Europe, the nobility staged lavish court masques and pageants to entertain their guests. Costumes depicted gods, animals, and mythological creatures, as well as such emotions as hope and joy. Designers for these festivities included Leonardo da Vinci and Inigo Jones.

Commedia dell'arte, a form of popular street comedy, emerged in Italy during the sixteenth century. Groups of itinerant actors presented largely improvised plays throughout Italy and Europe. Like the Greek comedies to which commedia is thought to be linkedcommedia actors portrayed stock characters identifiable by their masks and by their traditional costumes.

Pantaloon, the archetypal doddering old man, was often dressed in the wide trousers that now bear his name. The wily servant Brighella had a coat of horizontal green stripes, the forerunner of nineteenth-century British livery. Other comic characters include Arlecchino, or Harlequin, Il Dottore, a pedantic academic always dressed in black, and Il Capitano, a cowardly Spaniard. The serious characters in commedia, two pair of lovers and a servant girl, wore contemporary clothing.


thoughts on “20th century theatre costumes

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *