BEHIND THE SCENES: CIRQUE DU SOLEIL
BEHIND THE SCENES: CIRQUE DU SOLEIL
Cirque Du Soleil has created a name for itself with costumes, headpieces and acrobatic movements that stun and stage production that is out of this world!
Cirque Du Soleil draws near, coming to North Charleston Coliseum on August 9th-13th, 2017 for a showcase of their newest show, OVO.
OVO contains an insect theme and a performance that kids, adults, and families can enjoy!
(Image by Cirque Du Soleil)
I got to sit down with the Head of Wardrobe, Luana Ouverney and discuss the details between the seams.
Luana hails from Brazil, originally but has been traveling with Cirque Du Soleil for over 4 years. She is a ball of fire, someone who knows fashion and knows production.
She studied in Brazil, graduated from college with a focus on fashion design. When I got to discuss this with her, I was also a ball of excitement because my degree and background are also in fashion.
I was curious to know, how to do you go from living and working in Brazil to traveling the world with one of the top theatrical groups in the country?
Luana informed me that from every show location, the company chooses two people in every city that are local to handle the laundering and the wardrobe after the performance. She was one of these local people chosen. Thus, her career began.
Three years later and she is the head of wardrobe at Cirque Du Soleil and full time with the team. She handles the costumes along with the team of four people. She works with the designer, the performers on their makeup, the inspiration drawn from the show by the designer and so on.
There are different areas within the wardrobe department. There are the shoes, hats and then costume areas. The hats are very vital as the costumes usually contain some sort of aspect with a hat, costume that incorporates a headpiece to complete the costume for the audience to grasp.
Each performer does makeup on his/her own and Luana oversees that the concept is coming to fruition with the right colors, style and that it matches the specific costume.
Luana oversees then corrects or fixes the costumes, hats and any wardorbe pieces with her team. She may end up having to hand stitch a seam if something rips, which often times does especially when moving from show to show.
The costume design for the OVO show is based on this intricate web of insects and through the motions and costume, the story is told vividly. Pops of colors with hues of greens, blues, pinks, reds and yellows show the insect portrayed by the performer.
As an audience, we will see insects like ants, grasshoppers, fleas and spiders all portrayed in gorgeous costumes that have the insect inspiration at heart when designed. Luana sits down with the designer to make sure she is conceptualizing the concept from the designer's eye and can view it for each insect.
Funny and crazily enough, Cirque Du Soleil carries their own laundry machines with them to make the wardrobe and process easier. Every tuesday during load in, the costumes are washed and ready to go for the next performance. Also, tuesdays are the days when Luana and her team set up the makeup stations for the performers.
Most of the costumes are made out of lycra and appliques and are usually mended by her team. She oversees the fabrics when the designer is designing and the movement of the fabrics as she gets to know how it will or won’t work with the performers movements.
The patternmaking for the costumes are all done by computers in the headquarters in Canada. While each performer has their own technician to handle the making and handling of the costume. The team also uses a 3D printer for designing and for printing, which in the fashion world, is amazing!
It takes about 5 hours to create a hat/headpiece or printed piece on the 3D printer. This shockingly enough is actually cheaper this way then having a milliner sit and hand stitch a hat!
(Image from Pollstar)
It takes roughly eight hours to pre-set the show, for Luana's team to go over every costume and check for mends and breaks in the seams.
The cricket costumes take about 72 hours to make out of lycra and mytex. The Ant costumes usually need repairs due to the zipper in the costume that is often broken between performances.
Amazing, right? Can't wait to see all this hard work in action!
Come see and appreciate this amazing show August 9th-13th here in Charleston! To learn more, click here.