Meet costume designer Ann Closs-Farley

Every year, Center Theatre Group chooses one emerging artist and honors them with the Sherwood Award. The 2010 Sherwood Awardee is costumer designer Ann Closs-Farley.  It’s been a very exciting year for Ann.  Check out her first message to the Green Room:

Happy Holidays Everyone.

I am so honored to have been selected to receive the 2010 Sherwood Award from Center Theater group.  I hope to create a worthy piece of art that will honor the late Richard E. Sherwood. I would love to do that by creating a project with the theme of “Happiness.”  As a visual Artist, I would like to explore this topic by using multimedia forms and collaborate with other local artists to create this theater adventure. I would like to have a junior design production team that would collaborate with their senior design counter part to develop this show.  Mentorship is an integral part of my own experience and process.  It is just as important to me as the actual presentation. I also want to use alternative means of achieving the  visual designs for this show through recyclable materials and found art. So, this week I will have my first meeting with CTG to discuss all the possibilities.  I’m very excited and I look forward to sharing more of the process with you.

Let me tell you a little about what I have been doing lately.  Last month was a doozy!  I started the month with the opening of The Pee wee Herman Show. I had a blast in the Big Apple with my fabulous crew shopping, sewing, bedazzling, and endlessly tweaking the costumes into perfection for their Broadway debut. An amazing experience I will never forget. Then, I returned home to outfit some very talented magicians, contortionists, actors, singers, and musicians in a recreation of a vintage vaudeville spook show at Brookledge (Thayer Theater) in Handcock Park.  It was delightful. In the middle of the month I costumed “Cabaret of Souls”, a wonderful  folk oratorio performed by Richard Thompson, Harry Shearer, Judith Owen and the Idyllwild Arts orchestra for UCLA LIve.  I was able to weaved a fusion of burlesque, steam punk and vintage circus themes through out to create a sexy  but fiendish feel for the evening.  The following Monday I received a call from the World Poker Tour that I  currently  style.  It  was heading for the Bellagio in Las Vegas for the “Festa al Lago” the first week of December.  So,  I called Atria Clothing who constructs the dresses, and we chose a cobalt blue rooched short dress for the Royal Flush Girls  and many many options for  our Host Kim Kim Lansing.  I sadly taught my last costume design class last Thursday at Pueblo High School which is sponsored by the  Heart Project in conjunction with the LA Opera.  Their design maquette’s were a spectacular display at their fall session exhibition at the Dorothy Chandler. I am so proud of their work and I am going to miss their company. Finally, I settled into the last project of the month: Same-O.  It is the latest installment of the 99 Cent Only Shows that  I design every year.  This years costumes are made out of all forms of paper.  All 160 of them and I’m not counting hats and headdresses.  Whew! This was a challenging task for me in many ways. One I really didn’t think about how much paper cuts  hurt until I had band aids on all my fingers.  I am so very proud  and honored to have had so many volunteer designers, craftsman, friends, family and neighbors of the Bootleg theater who came down and hot glued this show together.  It is so beautiful.  You really should come down to the Bootleg and see it for yourself.

Now, I am off to begin my Holiday Season by making brooches and headbands for my two daughters school Holiday Boutique where the students can do their family holiday shopping and support their school as well.

Now, I am going to celebrate this season by going to sleep, then eat, try to dance a lot, shout and jump for peace, love my friends and family abundantly and celebrate the gifts and joy this year has brought.


Ann  Closs-Farley

About CTGeducation

At Center Theatre Group (CTG) our mission is to entertain, but also to provoke and to inspire. We believe that theatre is nothing less than a cultural force that has the power to transform the lives of individuals and society at large. We reach out beyond our stages through our education programs to connect with Los Angeles youth – our future audience and our future artists. View all posts by CTGeducation

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