RHS attempting to cash in on costumes


Feature Photo By: Alexis Oliver- All of the available costumes sit in rows in Rangeview’s costume shop. Some of the pieces have already been either bought or rented before the collection was purchased.

By Alexis Oliver, Review Staff

Costumes help express the type of clothing or overall appearance of a certain character or performer. Romeo Montague would wear a doublet with intricate, golden embroidery to emphasize his wealth, not a hoodie and basketball shorts. King Arthur slayed foes on the battlefield, dressed in knightly armour and rode horseback; his position would be lost to the audience, if he were dressed in a plain T-shirt, jeans, and sneakers. Without costumes inform the audience of crucial information about a character.

Costumes can’t be purchased just anywhere, which means finding reputable places that sell them can be difficult process. Last year’s head of theater, Mrs. Strouse, wasted no time when she came across such a golden opportunity.

“Ivywild Costumes was in business in Colorado Springs for thirty years. Last year, I went to rent some costumes from [the owner] for Spamalot. While I was there, she had mentioned that she was up for sale on Ebay, and I asked her how much it would be for the whole collection,” Strouse explained.

Strouse was looking for a store that sold costumes, in order to eliminate the need of having to rent costumes constantly for plays and shows. When she came across Ivywild’s owner, she immediately decided to purchase her collection.

Thankfully, Rangeview approved of the investment. Over the summer, Strouse worked extra hard to organize a costume shop for not only Rangeview to use, but for other schools and organizations.

This is only one of the versions of the Cinderella dress that resides in the shop. The entire collection was an investment purchase for the school.
This is only one of the versions of the Cinderella dress that resides in the shop. The entire collection was an investment purchase for the school. (Alexis Oliver)

“It’s incredible that we have the ability to continue to grow our theater department, and have the support that we have from the administration– to make investments like a costume shop that will end up benefiting Rangeview and its community for a very long time,” Mr. Hill, current head of theater, said.

In order to make ends meet, fundraisers and loans from the district helped support the department. With that money, theaters could rent costumes but could not afford to purchase many pieces for themselves. Now, with the addition of a costume shop, there are high hopes to make the theater more self-sufficient in the near future, Strouse said. As a matter of fact, according to Strouse, the shop is supposed to be up and running as early as after Halloween.

Actors in Rangeview’s theater department are also looking forward to future projects.

“It’s incredible!” said actor and senior Nate Betuel. “It expands the amount of shows we can do, like the difficulty of shows, things like Beauty and the Beast, the costumes would be super expensive for us to even rent, let alone buy. Now we can just have them to use whenever we want, and to get the revenue for that means so much to theater.” 

Strouse’s efforts, she hopes, and lucky timing, will help solve the problems theater once struggled with in the past. She hopes the revenue will help improve the overall quality of shows, and reduce other expenses and the community will be able to continue to enjoy theater productions for years to come.