Costumes are perhaps the least ephemeral element of a performance – how we come to think of them is the theme. This issue is unique as it features a portfolio of costume design research by François Barbeau, rather than a script. Full colour images with remarks by Barbeau narrate aspects of his research of costume materials at the Cirque du Soleil Research and Development lab. The nine featured articles emphasize the designing, making, wearing, and exhibiting of costumes. Interviews maintain ongoing dialogues with performance: design practice for First Nations performance; designing as collaborative dramaturgy; conceptualizing a Queen Mas for the Caribbean Carnival; wearing costumes at the Stratford Shakespeare Festival; and creating and managing the costume wardrobe for the Vancouver Olympics. Alongside these interviews are reflections on the process of bringing costumes out of performance and into the exhibition hall, without replacing actors by mannequins. Notes from the technological animation of the “catwalk” for Jean Paul Gaultier’s retrospective show affinities between performance and displays of fashion design. The issue is rounded out by advocacy to confront the status of designers in the contractual relations of professional theatre in Canada.
Click here to read the introduction and view the table of contents.