Go Behind the Scenes at Arizona Opera Costume Shop on an all-new "ArtBeat Nation"

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Take a behind-the-scenes view of the costume creation process on an all-new "ArtBeat Nation" premiering on Aug. 30 at 5 p.m. on Arizona PBS.

PHOENIX – (August 26, 2015)

Get an exclusive look behind the scenes of Arizona’s multi-city signature opera company, the Arizona Opera, and catch a sneak-peek into the elaborate costume creation process on an all-new “ArtBeat Nation” on Aug. 30 at 5 p.m.

In this local Arizona feature of the art series “ArtBeat Nation,” viewers will get an inside view of the Arizona Opera costume shop and learn how costumes make the journey from mere ideas in the opera director’s mind, to period-correct, couture garments that dazzle on stage. The process is led by costume shop manager Kathleen Trott, who explains how costume designers work closely with the opera’s director to ensure that all costumes reflect each character’s individual personality.

“Costuming is about more than looking good on stage,” Trott said. “Costumes also make a statement about who the characters are as people, and can even play an integral role in showing how characters change and evolve throughout a performance.”

As Trott details in the segment, designers conduct research before creating each garment to ensure they accurately portray the dress of particular time periods, professions and other key aspects of each character.

This behind-the-scenes spotlight takes viewers step-by-step through the complex process of costume creation, including sketching, cutting, draping, sewing and fitting.

Costumes go through several phases and are worked on by many hands across various disciplines before actors don the garments on stage. A sketch team creates drawings based on the director’s vision, and once approved, a team of artisans combine their talents to bring the vision to life.

“It’s stunning to see how much work and preparation goes into creating the breathtaking costumes featured on stage,” said Jennifer Burke, “ArtBeat Nation” producer at Arizona PBS. “I was so impressed by the talent of the design team after learning that all of the costumes are custom-made and handcrafted. I think our viewers are going to enjoy this behind-the-scenes look at the costume creation process — it definitely adds another layer of appreciation to a night out at the Arizona Opera.”

“ArtBeat Nation” is a weekly arts series highlighting the rich tapestry of arts stories from across the country, featuring artists, writers, composers and performers setting the pulse of the arts in America now. It airs Sundays at 5 p.m. on Arizona PBS. Past episodes are available for online viewing along with additional information at www.azpbs.org/artbeat

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