Costumes, Costumes, Costumes
Patricia LaFramboise is the Costume Chair for the Players Guild of Dearborn production of Stephen Sondheim’s A Little Night Music. Patricia is an Honorary Member of the Guild having been a member for more than 25 years. She has costumed a number of Guild productions including Camelot, The King and I, Chicago, and Thoroughly Modern Millie.
The Players Guild production is Patricia’s second effort at costuming A Little Night Music. She costumed a production of the show for the Jewish Community Center a number of years ago.
There is a lot of work involved in costuming a show like A Little Night Music. The show is set in Sweden at the turn of the 20th Century so you’re talking “period” costumes. There are 23 actors in the show all of whom need to be dressed as though they stepped out of the late 1890s or early 1900s. For the most part the characters are well-to-do and dress accordingly.
Patricia and her crew of seamstresses are making 20 gowns. Each of the principal women wear three different gowns during the show. At one point, all of the principal men are in tuxedos. The servants need to look as though they work for a wealthy family, so matching vests were made for them. Count Carl-Magnus Malcolm is a military man. He appears in full dress uniform in a number of the scenes. All of the principal women are corseted.
Work on the costumes began before the auditions with planning and finding photos of other productions of the show. Almost immediately after the show was cast, Patricia and her crew were attending rehearsals to gather the measurements of the cast members. They are building some costumes from scratch. Others are being “repurposed” from items in the Guild’s collection. Some of the more important costume pieces are being rented.
The accompanying photo shows one of the gowns that will be worn in the show.
A Little Night Music opens on Friday, April 26 at the Players Guild of Dearborn. Click here for more information and to purchase tickets online.
Diane Cliff models the gown she will wear in the show.