Age of Innocence
Age of Innocence
Director: Sarah Lacy Hamilton
Stage Manager: Meg Sugden
Scenic Designer: Robert Petrie
Costume Designer: Chelsea June Regan
Lighting Designer: Rachel Sather
New Play Festival
Budget for this Design Area
Comments by the Designer
Age of Innocence debuted as part of the 2018 New Play Festival, written by University of Iowa alumnus Nina Morrison. Age of Innocence is a modern take on the novel of the same title. It explores the timeless intricacies and hardships of falling in and out of love as partners grow and change, taking place in modern day with moments of magical reality that take us back to 1820 and 1920. The modern-day scenes are seen through the lens of an interview based on the famed interview in which Jill Soloway and Eileen Myles explored their gender identifies and broken relationship.
The costume design of this show focuses on the silhouette and color of garments and how that impacts societal views of gender. To emphasis each character’s personality, I aimed to create a masculine silhouette for Eileen and a feminine silhouette for Jill, following them throughout all three time periods. For Eileen, I focused on straighter lines, giving them a less defined waist and broader shoulders. I was able to accomplish this by giving them a suit jacket in the modern scenes, a sack coat in the 1820s and embracing the straight lines of a 1920s gown in that scene. For Jill, I wanted to focus on a more feminine silhouette, so I emphasized her natural waist and gave her colors that are traditionally associated with female garments. For her modern look, I gave her a light pink blazer, a form fitting waistcoat and tailcoat for the 1920s, and a bustled purple and gold Victorian dress for the 1820s.
For this design I had the budget of $100, which allowed me to buy modern pieces for the production. Most of my budget went into buy pants, and blazers, while some was reserved for the dry cleaning of the period costumes. While the modern garments were easily accessible through stores, I had to go through our stock to find period pieces that I could adapt and rig, so the actors could complete their quick changes. Each quick change was about forty-five seconds long, and either had an actor going into a period costume, switching period costumes, or going back into their modern costume. Most of this was achieved by over dressing, replacing buttons with snaps and Velcro, as well as spending an hour of our limited tech, time to train two crew members how to complete the changes, and rehearse them.
Overall for this design, I created costumes that were rooted in reality but challenged our associations with physical presentation and inner identity.
Copyright 2020 Chelsea June