Inspired by its original location of the play, the director and I decided to keep up with the Italian theme.
The Montagues and the Capulets – although sworn enemies – are very much alike. Their feud led me to research gangster lore. In 1950s and 1960s Italian crime and violence was at its peak. The Italian mafia was omnipresent, with famous trials taking place in the late 1960s.
The look of my characters often projects an image of a typical businessman in a formal suit. The clothing was very similar to the everyday work outfit, only with slightly more edge and, of course, fedora hats as a distinctive feature.
The similarity between the two families is an important theme in the play, coupled with love, fate and duality. I wanted this reflected in their costumes colour schemes, with the audience still being able to identify two families by their different silhouettes.
I have kept the beauty and power of the fortress as the main canvas and dressed it with multifunctional props and drapes which suggest different locations.