July 24, 2008
Susan Claassen stars as the legendary Hollywood designer Edith Head - winner of eight Oscars - in A Conversation With Edith Head, in the Studio at the Leicester Square Theatre, (formerly The Venue), 5 Leicester Place, London WC2, from 29 July - 31 August.
1. You will be swept away into the Golden Age of Hollywood
The Studio Theatre at the new Leicester Square Theatre is being transformed into “Miss Head’s Salon” where she dressed (or undressed) the glamorous stars of the silver screen from Mae West to Grace Kelly to Robert Redford. I think of the performance as an intimate portrait, a feast of great movie legends, delicious stories and a whisper of gossip. Edith Head may not be a household name these days, but in her prime she was one of the most colourful characters in Hollywood. She was dishing out caustic fashion advice years before Trinny and Susannah made careers out of it. In her six decades of costume design, she worked on over eleven hundred films; received 35 Academy Award nominations, and won an unprecedented eight Oscars. This is a record that will never be broken.
2. You’ll get to be up close and personal with some of Edith Head’s Hollywood gowns and her one-of-a-kind original sketches
I actually purchased some original Edith Head sketches and costumes at auction which will be on display. I’m an avid ebayer when it comes to Edith Head memorabilia. I won’t be wearing any of Edith’s creations in the show as when she was at work she wore simple clothes never to upstage the stars she was dressing! You will, however, get to see some original Edith Head costumes as well as some iconic recreations. Did you know Miss Head designed the uniform for Pan Am and the flight attendant in Boeing Boeing is an homage to that design!
3. If you’re stylishly dressed then you’ll be awarded an Edith Head Gold Star - they are very rare and sought after and were the hit of last year’s Edinburgh Fringe
I come out among the audience and have been known to comment … Remember, Edith Head did “Hollywood Red Carpet” commentary while Joan Rivers was still in college. … I can’t wait to see the brilliantly stylish London audiences
4. You’ll fall in love with this wonderful woman…just like the biggest stars in Hollywood
“Edith Head was like my surrogate mother. I think she loved me and I truly loved her”
“When I finally got ‘dressed’ by Edith Head, that’s when I knew I was really a star”
“What Edith Head did for us all, with clothes is inestimable-she was in a class by herself”
“Edith knew the figure faults of every top star. And she never told - Edith always knew how to keep a secret”
“When that little thing walks into a room, you know she’s there”
5. You’ll believe you’ve really met Edith Head
It is such a privilege to keep this amazing woman’s legacy alive. From Tbilisi to Edinburgh 2007 (where we were so fortunate to be one of only 200 official “Sell-Out” Shows) to Chicago audiences have been touched by Edith’s story. What they take with them after having seen the performance is truly dependent on what they bring to it. Film buffs get immersed in hearing stories from someone who has lived through the evolution of contemporary film, older audiences remember always seeing the closing credits, “Gowns by Edith Head” and it evokes a bygone era and younger audiences think of the Pixar animated film “The Incredibles” and Edna Mode, designer to the super heroes. The universal response is summed up by a note I received from a fan, “My friend saw the show on Saturday and adored it. He said the same as me, that if someone mentions Edith Head to me now, my first reaction will be to say ‘Oh yes, I met her once and it was unforgettable!”
For more info & tickets visit www.ticketweb.com or call 0844 847 2475