POULTNEY-The Poultney Summer Theatre Company's upcoming Shakespeare on Main Street event will feature William Shakespeare's beloved "The Tempest".
This summer's magical production will showcase young designer Gina D'Angelo who is already making a name for herself in New York and California. She is known for her innovative and high-tech costumes, which are also sold nationally.
For this summer's cast of "The Tempest", D'Angelo is known fondly as the Costume Mistress.
"This production is magical and fun as shipwrecked characters interact," said D'Angelo. "My assistant Caroline Hogan and I don't have to be stuck in the traditional Elizabethan period. The two opposing factors of royalty versus the island fanstasticals give us the opportunity to play out the contrast of the two groups."
Period costumes will be fancy, ornate, and devoid of color, purely black and white, whereas the islanders' costumes will be colorful, laid back and sensual.
In Shakespeare's time, the all-male casts covered male and female roles. Today, in Poultney, there's a new twist-it's an all-female Shakespearean cast.
"The all-woman cast has proven challenging because we need women to look like men," said D'Angelo. "Gary Meitrott, our artistic director's, inspiration let women take it back when in the Shakespearean era men dominated the casting."
Despite the all-female cast, Christine Blust plays the only female character, Miranda.
Three women play goddesses: Sierra Carter, Caroline Hogan, and Serena Gallagher represent a total of four roles.
The creature Caliban, the reptilian fish monster, is portrayed by Maris Wolff, who has been a dancer all her life. Her elaborate costume matches her energy and portrayal of Caliban.
Ariel is a sprite, magical fairy that tends to be invisible often playing pranks on others. Jenna Carlson in this role is made up to be plant-like, somewhat of a wandering vine.
Prospero exiled to the island with his daughter took over and enslaved Caliban causing lots of internal conflicts. Ida Mae Johnson as Prospero is like a wizard, and the focal point of her costume is her magical cloak.
D'Angelo resides in Poultney and operates her business there-the Uncanny Adventures in Comic Costume Creations.
Since childhood, she has been inspired by the lure of costumes.
D'Angelo graduated with a bachelor's degree in fashion merchandising and design from Marist College in Poughkeepsie, N.Y. She also attended one year at Dutchess County Community College.
"Marist is a college with an exclusive and extensive (fashion) program, where one can do internships with famous designers. I got to do mine with Donna Karan," she said.
Currently, D'Angelo is working on a project on a display for the California State Fair. "It's like a Hollywood theme. My booth goes on tour for a year," she said.
Check It Out: "The Tempest" will be performed July 30-31, Aug. 1, and Aug. 6-8. For more details, call Kitty Galante at 802-287-4270.