A theme running through Deborah McAndrew’s script for the 2018 cycle of the Chester Mystery Plays is the 21st century throwaway culture and humanity’s need to embrace recycling and reuse.
In the spirit of this, she and the production’s designer Dawn Allsopp are appealing to the people of Chester to search their wardrobes and drawers for clothes they no longer need, which could be reused and adapted to dress the cast of almost 200.
Deborah said: “One of the big ideas is that we are destroying God’s Creation, and in particular see Noah’s Flood not just as a biblical story, but as a modern disaster that is affecting the world today due to climate change.”
Dawn added: “The design locates the stories now as the people of Chester once again gather to stage them. It seems in keeping with the themes to take an environmentally sustainable approach in the way we costume the plays.
“The idea is to use contemporary clothing and recycled items and present them in an historical and creative way, so that we believe as an audience we are looking at Jesus and the Disciples in Biblical times.
“With this in mind we are looking for donations of clothing to reuse, adapt and put on stage. We are after things like linen or cotton trousers, shirts, dresses and tops to fit all ages from seven-year-old children to teenagers to adults. These should be in natural colours with no patterns and not too bright, for example creams, white, beige, green, russet, blue and grey. Some striped fabrics would be acceptable too and they all need to be in wearable condition.
“Perhaps now is their time for stardom!”
If you have suitable clothes you could donate to the Chester Mystery Plays, Dawn and costume supervisor Paula Cain will be at Churchill House in the University of Chester’s Queen’s Park campus on Sunday, April 29 from 10am-12. There is ample parking.
The Chester Mystery Plays are produced only once every five years in the city. The 2018 production is at Chester Cathedral from June 27 – July 14. Tickets are available from www.chestermysteryplays.com, by telephone 01244 500959 or in person at the Chester Cathedral box office.