“Rent” — the Broadway favorite that has been in retirement for the past three years — made its comeback in July. And with every major comeback there’s a reinterpretation, which in this case came in the form of an extensive wardrobe makeover.
It was only fitting, with 90’s fashion currently making its own comeback, that “Rent,” a 90’s baby, would update its look to be more fresh and modern. Denim vests and lots of leather might already be in every fashionista’s closet, but now they’re also on the Off-Broadway stage, per Angela Wendt’s trendy redesigns. Wendt, who was the costume designer for the original and has taken on the same role in the revival, explains to the New York Daily News:
It really was not so much looking at completely new characters, but what else would they have had in their wardrobe. When we did it first in ’96, I would change something here or something there, or little details – basically kept it based on the original ‘Rent.’ In terms of keeping it fresh and keeping it new, this has really been the big step to update the show.
And for those of you who are loyal to the original costuming, be prepared, there are a few major changes. For one, Angel’s Santa outfit is long gone, as are his dramatic wigs and his New Year’s Eve go-go boots. Instead, the designers thought about which designers Angel, the character, would be inspired by — and settled on Paco Rabanne and Viktor & Rolf. Fashion-y! The drum-playing drag queen can now be seen in what the Daily News describes as a “Christmas present-inspired cape with an oversized bow” and, for New Year’s, a “mini-frock, stitched together with mirrored glass and yellow smiley faces.”
For such major wardrobe revisions, Wendt needed inspiration, so she turned to vintage copies Vogue and Details, as well as photos of the Tompkins Square riots and the homeless in East Village, Japanese street fashion, and Korean pop groups.
Yet, as much as fashions go in and out of style, as Wendt puts it, “Some things just never go out of style,” and one of those things is Roger’s leather jacket. So, loyalists, rejoice! Wendt promises, “A few items are just perfect and can’t be replaced, and that’s one of them.”
Are you going to go see the new “Rent?”
[Via NY Daily News]