Wednesday, December 7, 2011

Behind the Scenes at The Guthrie

Quote of the Day: I regard the theatre as the greatest of all art forms, the most immediate way in which a human being can share with another the sense of what it is to be a human being. - Oscar Wilde 

The window you are looking at with the blue light and the beautiful woman is in the main floor lobby of The Guthrie Theater in Minneapolis. My friend Denise and I had a backstage tour before we watched Charley's Aunt on Sunday evening. Carrie Monroe, who works in the Wardrobe Department, offered to show us where she works. Carrie and I met during the A-Z blog challenge last April. We have been cyber friends, enjoying each other's blogs, and met in person on Sunday.

Today, in the blogosphere, Alex J. Cavanaugh is hosting his monthly Insecure Writer's Support Group. I am part of that group and I am participating, but I'll have to admit that my insecurities are starting to fade.  I wrote about that overwhelming feeling I get when I'm in a large bookstore and think my book, if I ever publish one, will be lost in these rows and rows of books. You can read Friday's post, How Books Stack up against Kids. It probably fits better with the insecure theme.

Still, I'll have to admit that never in my wildest dreams did I imagine that I'd be invited to the Guthrie Theater to watch and review plays, that people would want to read my reviews and respect my opinion and be drawn into my descriptions. My friend and publicist, Krista Rolfzen Soukup at Blue Cottage Agency, tells me, "You are a great blogger. People want you to write reviews for them. People love reading your writing." And, I start to believe it. I start to see how my writing is expanding, that this is what I was born to do. That it is connecting people and drawing them in and encouraging them to live out their dreams, too.

Which is how I got behind the closed doors of The Guthrie for a private tour. (The Guthrie offers guided tours at specified times. Check their website for details.)

We peeked into the remarkably clean workroom where they build the sets. The walls open up into huge doors so they can transport whole sets down the hall and onto the stages.

We saw the costume shop where they build costumes.

This board of costume sketches fascinated me. Carrie told us that the artist who designed the costumes for A Christmas Carol draws in the faces of the actual actors, making them so realistic.

Here's the one from A Christmas Carol that looked like one of the Whos down in Whoville.

The sketches for Charley's Aunt.

Here's Carrie showing us the sort of rough draft version of a costume. It starts out as a muslin mock-up, measured and fitted, before they ever cut into the fabric.

Denise asked where the fabric came from (she's a great question-asker and knows a few things about sewing). Carrie said they come from all over, some in the twin cities. This designer is from New York, so the fabric came from stores in New York City.

We saw hats and wigs and rows of neatly labeled fabric and costume pieces.
(Denise was particularly impressed with the organization.)

Head gear from previous shows.

Forms of heads!

Here's where Denise drooled.

Thanks, Carrie, for the great tour! We learned so much and had a great time. Denise also asked where all the shoes were. Carrie said that whatever is being worn for the shows are in the dressing rooms. Otherwise, they are stored off-site along with costumes and props that can be rented out, which is particularly helpful to schools and kids doing reports who need costumes.

Meet Carrie over at Kiwi's Life. Dare to do something new. Believe that you are capable and worthy of success in your art. You never know what doors will open for you.

Go. Create. Inspire!

Journaling Prompt:  Have you ever done something that felt so right, yet, never thought possible?

No comments:

Post a Comment