Hey! You know what’s cool and exciting? I am helping to design the costumes for CONNetic Dance’s upcoming production of A Midsummer Night’s Dream! CONNetic Dance is a ballet company based in Hartford, CT and their show this June is a steampunk rendition of the Shakespearean classic. The set designer for the show located my work over the internet, and the director asked for my assistance in designing costumes for the dancers! I have an extensive background in costume design and in steampunk, as you all know, so this task couldn’t be more up my alley.
Because of my upcoming senior exhibition I won’t be able to physically construct all of the costumes myself, but I am able to provide suggestions for practical adaptations of steampunk style dress in sketch form, as well as provide a wealth of knowledge on victorian era dress and the steampunk movement. The challenge in designing these costumes is that they need to be conducive to dance! Steampunk is traditionally done in heavy suiting materials and is composed of structured garments like jackets and corsets. Nothing restrictive can be used here or the dancers won’t be able to do their thing. That’s why I am keeping all of my bodices soft, providing stage-ready alternatives to heavy fabrics, and taking lots of inspiration from the saloon and circus wear of the era.
In this post are my first three costume designs: Helena, Hermia, and Lysander. Three of the four “lovers.” They come from the orderly and lawful city of Athens, and so I wanted to make their costumes to appear structured and civilized. This is steampunk however, and CONNectic Dance likes their performances to have a little spice, so I did add a few dramatic details in the color and trimmings to punk-up the victorian mechanics.
For more on CONNetic dance, you can check out their website here: http://www.conneticdance.com/
and their Facebook page here: https://www.facebook.com/pages/CONNetic-Dance/38283164384