I have been researching some initial ideas for the atmosphere and setting of the play, and trying to get a feel for 1950s London. In my head I have images of ‘Chicago’ and that cabaret style, however I know this is a completely different time and location, therefore I wanted to conduct some further research so my ideas would be more appropriate for the play. As it is based on a true story, it is so important to be accurate in everything, from costume and makeup, to set and props. Here are some images, some real and some staged, from the 50s to give me a starting point.
In order to make my set realistic and accurate to the time period, I have been researching different styles of furniture and the kind of designs which they had back then. I also have to take into account the setting of the play, which is in a nightclub, and also the colours of the furniture so that the lighting design will compliment it. I have particularly been looking at rotating, or ‘swivel’, chairs as that is what I want my audience to sit on so they have turn around in accordance with the action.
Looking at period clothing for men and women in the 50s. I am particularly interested in Ruth’s costume, and making her appear sexy and seductive, but still with an element of being a victim. I think the small details of her costume are really important such as the glasses and headscarf.
I am also interested in menswear for Jack Gale. There is quite a specific suit which men would wear in the 50s, and I feel this would be accompanied by a trilby hat, appropriate shoes and other accessories.