I was thrilled to do the clothes for this innovative rock musical at the Public Theater and on Broadway. Stew's coming-of-age story was acted out by a character called Youth with an incredible ensemble who played everyone he met in his journeys. The band (and Stew's musical collaborator, the talented Heidi Rodewald) were onstage and part of the action.
The director Annie Dorsen asked me to create looks for the ensemble that could transform into different characters quickly, often without leaving the stage. I made the silhouettes strong and dark so they would stand out against the gorgeous, colorful light wall created by David Korins and Kevin Adams. I gave Youth a red t-shirt to match Stew’s, so that their connection would be absolutely clear. Although the story ranges from 1970s LA and Amsterdam to Berlin in the early 80s, we avoided period clothes and went for a look that was current with a retro vibe. Spike Lee shot a movie over the last weekend of our Broadway run that preserves the special experience of this show forever.
Book by Stew
Music by Stew and Heidi Rodewald
Directed by and Created in Collaboration with Annie Dorsen
Choreography: Karole Armitage
Set Design: David Korins • Lighting Design: Kevin Adams
Cast: Stew, Daniel Breaker, Eisa Davis, d’Adre Aziza, Rebecca Jones, Colman Domingo and Chad Goodridge.
The Band: John Spurney, Heidi Rodewald, Christian Cassan and Christian Gibbs.
Photos: Carol Rosegg