Trousers wanted – for ambitious new community theatre production

Costume making for Blood + Chocolate. Photograph: Ken Beech, on the Blood + Chocolate Flickr stream
25 May 2013 @ 4.32 pm
| Entertainment

Costume making for Blood + Chocolate. Photograph: Ken Beech, on the Blood + Chocolate Flickr stream
Costume making for Blood + Chocolate. Photograph: Ken Beech, on the Blood + Chocolate Flickr stream
Community theatre returns to York’s streets later this year, as a new production dramatises the life of the city at the outbreak of the First World War.

It’s a story about the people of York performed by the people of York. And it needs your help – specifically your trousers, skirts and other clothes.

Blood + Chocolate tells a story about a York industry that has travelled the world. York’s factories and shops were at the forefront of the modern chocolate industry as it became widely available in Europe.

Written by Olivier Award Winning writer Mike Kenny (The Railway Children, York Mystery Plays 2012), this new production will tell a story inspired by the employers and workers of the chocolate factories in York during the First World War and will include hundreds of cast members from the community using the city and its locations as never seen before.

It is a co-production between Pilot Theatre, known for their live and digital work, and Slung Low, a company that makes adventures for audiences outside of conventional theatre space

In order to costume a community cast of more than 200 actors they need your help to source items of clothing from around that period in time: 1914 (late Victorian / Edwardian styles).

Raid your attics, look in charity shops, ask family or friends, beg or borrow whatever you’re able to. If you do, your old trousers could be starring in what promises to be an amazing production.

Please see the list below for the specific pieces they are after and if you have any suitable items please bring them to York Theatre Royal’s stage door reception between 9am and 8pm, Monday to Saturday. Clearly label them “Blood + Chocolate”. 

Men’s Clothes

Trousers: Ideally wide, straight legged & high-waisted, dark colours
Waistcoats: With pockets if possible, but not essential
Jackets: Single-breasted with pockets, dark colours; black or navy
classic two- and three-piece suits: single-breasted, ideally over 30 years old in style
Shirts: Plain or striped in white, neutral, dull colours, with or without collars
Braces: Button and clip-on, broad straps, dark, plain, neutral colours
Hats: Bowler, straw boaters, flat caps, baker-boy
Shoes & Boots: Black or brown lace-ups old-fashioned styles with a heel, classic Oxfords or brogues, long, calf-length Army-style boots
Modern-day overcoats: for the beginning of the play

Women’s Clothes

Skirts: Long/ankle-length, straight, flat at front, ideally plain dark colours
Blouses/shirts: long-sleeved, open or closed high-necked, white
Coats: Long/ankle-length, single-breasted black or dark colours
Jackets: Short, hip-length, single-breasted, dark colours
Two-piece skirt suits: Fitted jacket, single-breasted, mid-calf length A-line skirt, dark colours
Hats: Black hats with wide brims, straw hats
Gloves: Coloured, cotton, vintage styles
Shoes & boots: Black or brown lace-ups, old-fashioned styles with a heel, ankle or calf-length boots.