Monday, June 8, 2009

Here we go..... The Wizard of Oz starts tomorrow - come and have a sneak peak

Only seven weeks ago Andrew and I were asked to help with the design and making of all the costumes and sets for The Wizard of Oz. With over 70 children and two casts (two Dorothy's, two Lions, Tin men and Scarecrows) off we went with a small budget to source what we could for both the sets and costumes. With a list of over 350 different unique costumes to make and children of many sizes and ages we measured and sized everyone and off we went. We, being a very small core group of mothers and grandmothers to whom I am very proud to call my friends spent the last seven weeks together each day designing, pinning, sewing, creating and having lots of fun together in our Wizard Workshop in Bowral kindly given to us to for this period by a wonderful woman in Bowral, where we made over seven hundred items for the show, from hats, pants, gowns, crowns, scarves, suits, monkeys wings, witches brooms, guards, spears and more

Each costume is unique and many costumes have been made from recycled materials, and without the generous donations of craft materials, fabrics and bling we could not have produced them. We used bedspreads, cushions covers, garbage bags and what ever I could get my hands on. It seemed that every day I had help from above as I aways found just the right coloured fabric, just enough for each costume in just the right time for production. I designed every scene carefully, wanting to create something wonderful, simple and within budget. Every costume list was times seventy, seventy poppies, seventy Emerald City costumes and remember with two different casts. Without the help from our local Alpacas I don’t quite know how I would have created a lion suit without their wool as it was just perfect!

Then came the sets, all to be built and created in our Wizard workshop, everything was again on a large scale and designed exclusively for Clubbe Hall. Tall and wide and easy to glide. A farm yard, a house on one side and bedroom on the other, eight Emerald doors and a salon behind. A corn field, an apple field and lions forest, a witches castle and scary forest and my very favourite a beautiful Munchkin City to match Glinda the good witch. …. Then we had to paint them. Without the many wonderful hands that reached out to help none of this could have happened. I am so glad to have been involved with this show, it has been one of the largest and most ambitious SHYAC productions ever.

I thank everyone who has helped me create this show, I could not have produced this without them, from all the talented sewers, the welders, the painters and cabinetmakers. Who all started at the beginning with “I don’t think I can do that” to now, who are brilliant and confident costume makers that can make anything. I have so enjoyed working them and with the all children in the show and I do hope you enjoy seeing them in their many characters, I know I have. To see them all dancing, singing and acting on stage as they magically bring all these costumes to life. It is truly amazing….

Creative Director - Coty Farquhar

And a huge thank you to photographer Mark Kelly who photographed all these images above and I heard he took over 1500 images. I can't wait to see them all. I have taken a few, however I have been too busy to get them all developed. They're still sitting in my bag. I just have one more thing to do, a bit more lion fur on the pants tonight before I go to sleep. Our first performance is in the morning and the local TV station are coming to film it.