Whether you’re a chorus member or a principal in a show, going in for your first costume fitting is daunting. You’re vulnerable. This is the moment your interpretations of your character meet the designer’s. It’s the next step in character development, but can be challenging if you’re not prepared. Here are some tips to take you from fitting novice to rock star.
StageAgent is embarking on a multi-part series breaking down that Golden Fleece of an actor’s desire—the National Tour. Over the course of the next several months we will be examining the attraction, benefits, potential downsides, and financial realities of living out of your suitcases for a few months or even a few years.
As a standby in the off-Broadway musical The Fantasticks, I’m often in a Starbucks during most performances, so when it was time to go on for a short time, my initial response was, “Damn, there goes all my free time.” As a parent of two small children, time is at a premium. But you may think I’ve completely missed the boat, that I should be elated at having a performing opportunity—and you’d be right, it just took me a couple of days to get here.
So, you want to design for theatre? Where do you begin? There is no simple path to a career in design. Some people find their way into the industry fresh out of college; others discover theatre later in life. Many receive traditional education; others learn on the job. Whether you’re in high school considering the college path, or mid-career with an urge to see your art onstage, there’s room and potential for everyone.
Should you be an understudy, a standby, a swing? It’s kind of a vague question, but usually the undercurrent there is that once you become known as a reliable cover, you’ll be an understudy forever. You could ask Shirley MacLaine, Anthony Hopkins, Bernadette Peters, Taye Diggs, Matthew Morrison, or Lea Michelle; they all started out as understudies and moved on to exceptional careers. But let’s backtrack a little, what’s the actual difference in these special stage roles? Each of these positions holds its own unique advantages and challenges.