Characters and their Costumes
HRH Duke of Illyria, James “Jamie” Orsino, Count Orsino, Played by Shannon Luster:
A minor member of the British Royal Family who has been sent to be governor of a small colonial island after appearing one too many times in the tabloids, (An unfortunate incident with a female impersonator.) Given to long poetic ramblings on the beauties of the opposite gender when under the influence of too many Mai Tais, he turns stuffy when his official position is questioned. A poster boy for Town and Country Magazine, he is sartorially perfect at all times, even if he appears to be in a time warp. His hero, is his late great-uncle, the former Edward VIII, ( The Duke of Windsor and Governor of the Bahamas) whose dress he imitates. He thinks giving up the British Throne for true love is the noblest thing anyone in his family ever did.
He is vaguely embarrassed that his grandfather (The Duke of Kent ) was closeted instead of running off with his true love Noel Coward, another person he admires. Like every hetero man on the island he is in love with Olivia, and feels like he too would be giving it all up for love, since if he married a Mafia connected island girl, the scandal would resound all the way to London. He is so used to being the admired object of every woman he meets, he is utterly oblivious that his press secretary and office manager the Rt. Hon. Miss. Cecily Valentine, and the Miss Gwendolyn Curio are mad about him. In the beginning of the play he is in light colored tropical suits, at the end in full bright red British official uniform.
Countess Olivia Belch, leader of the influential Belch “family”, played by Amy Taylor:In seclusion after the untimely deaths of her father and brother by hit squads of a rival “family”, she competently runs her family household business, but has no real interest in it. Her family raised her to marry well and bring the family into respectability, so her instincts are more ladylike than lethal. However, as both the richest and sexiest single woman in Illyria she is bored to death by having every man she meets fall in love with her. Even the Duke has an aura of tedium to her since he worships her blindly for her looks. When Viola does not immediately adore her, she assumes she has finally found the only man who is unmoved by her beauty. Devoted to poolside/beach wear her fashion sense is in fast forward, the antithesis of the Duke’s. She wears dark clothing, glasses and a side arm to begin with, then her wardrobe adds color to a tropical intensity as her love for the determinedly indifferent Cesario increases.
Ms. Viola Sebastian, in disguise as Mr. Cesario, played by Tiffany Guinn:Still in flux while Tiffany and Telo work this out with me, each other and Anatoly.
Mr. Roderigo Sebastian, her twin brother, played by Telo Walden:Still in flux while Tiffany and Telo work this out with me, each other and Anatoly.
Mr. Arthur Malvolio, butler to Olivia,played by Michael Karoly. Malvolio adopts a British style uptight respectable person in public to please Olivia, but longs to marry her and become the head of the “Family”. She regards him as merely a fashionable accessory of affluent living (and a useful snitch who keeps her informed of the transgressions of her subordinates). He wears full formal Bahaman style suits for work, but secretly nurses a vinyl sissy maid fetish in his room at night. Fabian/Toby/and/or/Maria view his antics in his black vinyl French Maid costume, yellow fishnets and black garter-belt, and incorporate the outfit into their letter purporting to come from Olivia. This induces him to appear publicly in the ensemble in front of Olivia, to her consternation.
Dr. Sir Toby “The DUDE”Belch,Bart.Ph.D.,Uncle to Olivia, played by Ben Thompson: Former professor of Philosophy at UAF, he had to leave after inducing his entire Ethics class to drop acid for their final. He relocated to Illyria, where his brother and nephew ran a successful drug and money laundering business. On the deaths of these individuals he was passed over as head of the family business because he regularly samples too much of the company products. Although well into middle age, he feels he is young and “with it” because he keeps young friends (Andrew Feste), dates young women (Maria), votes for radical politicians, and takes all the latest drugs. His clothing and hairstyles are still stuck in the Hippie `60’s, but are the worse for wear. Hovering on the edge of a mid-life crisis, he is pushed to the breaking point when he gets beat up by Sebastian, and reacts by dumping his young friend Andrew, and marrying his girlfriend, Maria so he can settle down and grow up.
“Mistress” Maria Flamenca, Olivia’s right-hand,played by Diana Williams Originally brought into the family by Olivia’s dad as a safe adopted “sister” companion for Olivia, she seamlessly slid into the role of body-guard and adviser when Olivia took control. Highly protective of the Belch family members, she regards Malvolio as an interloper. The opposite of Sir Toby, she is 19 going on 35, and dresses like she wants to be the new Emma Peel. Where Toby is always raising hell in order to feel young, Maria is always dispensing advice, keeping folks in line, and behaving sensibly in order to feel more mature. Like Malvolio, her desire for dominance & control makes her want to marry Sir Toby so she can get him into Rehab and eventually move into the head of household position as Olivia loses interest. Her saving graces however are a genuine liking for people (especially Toby who she is constantly trying to reform), and a rare sense of humor. She has a crisis when Malvolio, the snitch, threatens her position after the buttery bar incident, even though she was doing her job to contain the problem. She feels she has got screwed for doing the right thing, and so determines to break the rules in order to shaft Malvolio and marry Toby. After her crisis her clothing gets lighter, younger and goofier, as she learns to have fun and be young again.
Sir Andrew Aguecheek, a stoner boy with funky hair, in love with Olivia, played by Brandon Seifert:A rich twit with a trust fund and no parental supervision, he too is mad for Olivia, chiefly because it gives him an excuse to hang out with Toby and get high. Although his temperament is amiable, he has no talent for anything beyond dancing, and has not noticed that Olivia is unaware he exists. He dresses in an odd amalgamation of trendy, funky clothes, such as are worn to raves. However, he dresses while under the influence, so the combinations of attire are usually unintentionally surreal. He is slightly attracted to Maria (who at least speaks to him, unlike Olivia), but is blissfully unoffended when she makes disparaging remarks about his bizarre yellow hairdo.
Mr.Antonio O’Rourke, a boat captain in love with Roderigo Sebastian, played by Jeff Hedges: Behind in paying his fines and bribes to the government officials of Illyria, he is a wanted man on trumped up charges of piracy.He comes to Illyria to follow Sebastian whom he saved from the shipwreck that separated Sebastian from his sister.Kind of a tough-guy swashbuckler sort, he smuggles drugs, throws his money around, and gets in fights at the drop of a hat.His dress and appearance will be modeled on Hunter S. Thompson, another guy who lives large and talks alternatively tough and poetic. Think also of “Duke” in Doonsbury
By production time this character changed to a guy who may have been Elvis hiding within the Bermuda Triangle, and unaware of his real identity. (I don’t have to make this stuff up, my director and actors do it for me)
Mr. Knave “The CLOWN” Feste, a musician/comedian for hire, played by Brett Good:Former KSUA DJ and philosophy student of Sir Toby, he now serves as an errand runner for Olivia, but gets in trouble by running off for days at a time and getting stoned and rowdy. His musical and philosophical inclinations have led him towards a Rasta outlook, but he has only committed himself as far as growing Dreadlocks and smoking dope. He finds it hard to suppress his nastier self and works at channeling it into his humor and Yoga.Malvolio, who he classes as a hypocrite, really pushes his buttons. His clothing tends towards the extreme of white-guy-who-wants-to-be-a-Rasta, and is useful in identifying him to the tourists as a guy who will sell them joints.
By production time this character changed to a life-guard beach muscleman.
Rt. Hon. Miss. Cecily Valentine, Press Secretary [and massage therapist] to the Duke, played by Amy Wendt: A keen reader of Majesty Magazine (and secretly the tabloids), Miss. Valentine feels in her adoring heart that the Duke (like all the Royals) got unfairly criticized in the press for what properly should be considered private matters by any civilized person.She was delighted to get the position of Press Secretary to the Duke, since it affords her “a chance to help to shape a positive public opinion about this important man”.She openly adores her boss, giving him backrubs, making his drinks, and flirting with him whenever possible.Her dress owes all it’s stylistic influence to the late Lady Di and Mary, the Queen Mother, two commoners who married royalty, and had better clothes sense than those born to it.Because she is aware that the press will photograph her next to the Duke at public functions, she makes an effort to coordinate the color scheme and style of her dress with that of the Duke.Her secretly nursed hope is to marry her boss.
By production time this character changed to a roller-skating cheerleader “Miss Carnival 2000″
Miss Gwendolyn Curio, office manager [and manicurist] to the Duke, played by Natalie Neubauer:Also in love with the Duke, and devoted to the styles and fashions of the British Royals. She vies for his attention with Valentine and has found her own way to cop a feel on Orsino, via maintaining his work-free hands’ manicure. In fact her only formal education was at beauticians college. Aware that her tall figure more closely resembles Olivia’s than Valentine’s, she makes a point of showing off her legs, in the hope his attention might transfer to her. More consciously calculating than Valentine, she too matches the Duke’s sartorial scheme, but puts a sexier spin on it. Her secretly nursed hope is to get a pair of Ducal kneepads.
Mr. Fred Fabian, a goon who breaks legs for the Belch Family, played by Chip Brookes: A smooth fast talker, he was poised to work his way up in the business when Malvolio snitched on him for taking on bets on the side of a fixed illegal fight. Demoted from head bookie to debt collector and minor enforcer, he is waiting for a chance to get even with Malvolio.His clothes are 1/2 Miami Vice, the other 1/2 sports fan clothing, which he used to identify himself to gamblers as a sports pool bookie.
By production time this character changed to an Irish con man who imagined he was the next Michael Flatley, but whose sartorial attempts at Lord of the Dance wear ended up looking more like a disco pimp. (Come to think of it, so do Flately’s outfits….
Officers,Sailors,Citizens,Tourists,and Bikini Babes,played by Kyle, Rafaela, etc:
I’m thinking that if we are unable to get the Sports Illustrated Girls to justify the film crew, we should make them tourists. Maybe even “Q-tip” tourists (white hair and sneakers).
We need some officers somehow, or there are plot problems.
Carnivale Costumes for Finale: The Advanced costume class is designing and making Carnival Costumes for the Finale.
Conceptual Images for the “Illyrian Tourist Bureau”: