IWU Senior Wins Prestigious Costume Design Award
March 16, 2006
BLOOMINGTON, Ill. - As theatre design majors from all across the country packed into
a room in Orlando this month at the Southeastern Theatre Conference (SETC) Design
Competition, Illinois Wesleyan senior theatre arts major and Watseka, Ill., resident
Janessa Styck meticulously set up her presentation for her original costume designs
for IWU's January production of A Man of No Importance by Terrence McNally. To her surprise, after a very careful presentation of her work,
Styck would win second place in the very prestigious costume design competition.
The competition is an annual part of the SETC conference and allows students to have
their work in costume design, scenic design, lighting design, and crafts and technology
reviewed by a board of prominent judges. Founded in 1949 in Chapel Hill, N.C., SETC
is the largest and most active regional theatre organization in the United States.
SETC affords college theatre students a chance to find internships and jobs in year-round
and summer stock theatre and is annually held in a different part of the country.
For the competition, Styck was required to present six color costume renderings with
matching fabric swatches. The renderings are to be mounted on a presentation board
and can include pictures of the actualized design, additional sketches, or a "bible,"
a book containing all the information necessary to make the costumes for the specific
play including actors' measurements, contact information, calendars, and expense records.
The competition also required a written design summary explaining the vision of the
designer. The catch was, all of these things must fit within a two and one half foot
For the competition, Styck spent months in preparation painting renderings, mounting
pictures and finding that one perfect font for the presentation board titles. "It
was a long process, but when you are a perfectionist and you are preparing for something
this important, you are waiting for 'the click' and for those 'happy accidents' that
make everything come together," said Styck.
"When I won, I didn't know how to feel at first. Then my 'cheering section' stood
up and they were all yelling for me. The whole department just came together to support
me just like they were my family. It felt so amazing," said Styck.
Contact: Taylar Kuzniar, (309) 556-3181