Melanie Schuessler is one of the wonderful Costume Designers who work here at Williamston Theatre. Audiences will remember her work from Flap, our summer show of 2007, and can see more of her designs this summer. She was kind enough to share some of her thoughts about working on Talley’s Folly with us…
I really like working in theatre. Where else would your list of things to do say “Blood!”? Not that there’s much blood, thank goodness, but I think it’s going to be a bit trickier getting just a tiny drop of blood in the right place than a larger amount.
Another note I have says “distress suit.” Distress in costume terms can mean anything from making clothes look a little rumpled to total destruction. I’ll be going for a little rumpled in this case. Matt Friedman is a man with one suit, and he wears it to work every day. He would of course wear a suit when he came courting, so there he is, in his lived-in suit and, as he tells us, a new tie. What sort of tie would Matt Friedman buy to impress Sally with the seriousness of his affection? Would it be different from the usual, probably conservative, tie that he claims to wear every day? Or would it be similar but just newer and fresher?
As for Sally, she’s a bit of a puzzler. She’s given up on love, and yet she wears a “pretty dress” to see Matt. She’s considered by herself and everyone in her town as a spinster, but she still has some pride in herself as a young woman and makes some effort to be fashionable. “Where is she between pretty and sexy?” I asked the director. He said, “She’s pretty sexy.” Thanks, John! I think we’ve got the right dress, though–not too young, not too loud, and looks good in moonlight.
Costume Designer, Talley’s Folly