Similar to how our playwrights were asked to pick the passion project they would like to cheat on their others plays with, our designers were asked to imagine what these plays could be, without constrictions or expectations. This creative freedom excites first year MFA costume designer Lirit Pendell, who will be dreaming up designs for KNOTTED.
“Sometimes you can get caught up in who will buy [a project], or who will work on it,” Lirit said. “With design, you’ll spend so long on one project. You can get caught up in negotiations or renegotiations and what you originally had can get lost. With this conference you can just put something out there, and this is what I loved.”
The play readings Saturday won’t have full-scale, produced design. Instead, our designers are asked to create an inspiration board and imagine what these plays could look like in future iterations. For Lirit, creating an idea board without physically creating the costumes provides additional room to dream.
“You get to keep more than one option,” Lirit said, “it’s hard when you can only have one [costume] in a scene. In my brain, there are so many different things that [a character] could be wearing! [By choosing] I feel like I am limiting her somehow.”
Talking with designers will help influence the playwrights and their respective pieces moving forward. Seeing the play through the eyes of a designer can often surprise and inspire writers in the next phase of development.
“I take a lot of inspiration from designers,” featured playwright Joanna Garner said, “in an ideal world I would write a play with designers. I often start from things that aren’t necessarily text. Sound, texture, feeling, light. Having people who think that way all the time is awesome.”
In addition to inspiring writers, hearing someone else’s take on a piece can help writers ensure what they visualize is clear. If something comes up design-wise that is not what the playwrights were seeing on the page, then they can work to clarify their vision. Collaborating with designers early in the development of our playwrights' pieces is sure to inspire the future of the projects.
The designers for each piece will discuss their dream designs and present their inspiration boards at 5:00 pm Saturday. Everyone is invited to come out and join us in imagining what these pieces could be!