All the clothing worn by a dancer during his performance is known as dance costumes. The design of the dance costume depends on the type of performance.
For any folk dance or ceremony, a traditional costume is used by the dancer. In any other case, the costume can be designed as required. A dance costume matters a lot for a dancer. Many people love to watch the moves of a dancer because of his costume. If the dancer wears any costume not suitable for his performance then his performance whether full of energy is not liked by the viewers. The concept of dance costume was given by Isadora Duncan. He was inspired by the Greek style of dancing.
Features of a good dance costume
A good dance costume must be eye-catching. The dancer should be comfortable during his performance. A good dance costume must have the following traits:
- It should be harmonized with the dance. It should not hinder the movements of the dancer.
- A costume must portray the mood and theme of the dance. It is the costume that develops the interest of the audience in the performance.
- A costume must be designed to expose the line of the dancer’s body. This makes a good image of the dancer in front of the audience. The audience will be impressed by the muscular body of the dancer.
- A costume must be designed by the artistic vision of the choreographer. A good dance costume engages the audience.
- A good costume is designed by considering the aesthetic requirements and budget.
- The costume may fit loosely or tightly but it should expose the structure of the body of the dancer.
- If the performance involves free movements in the dance then a costume must be designed that a dancer can move by wearing it.
- The dark color costume makes the dance appear slimmer but the light color makes him appear larger. The color of the costume enhances the body line and form. It should be selected according to the skin color of the dancer.
- The texture of the costume should be kept in mind. The horizontal lines on the costume widen and shorten the body and vertical lines visually lengthens and thin the body of the dancer.
Selection of fabric for a dance costume
The fabric selection should done by considering many factors. One of the most important factors is that of light. A piece of fabric must be selected that is good for the dancer. The characteristics of absorbing and reflecting the light make the fabric best for the performance. Dance is all about movements. So, the fabric of the dance costume should be the one in which the movements of the dancer are completely visible. Some suitable fabrics are:
It is a lightweight fabric. It can be made up of silk or polyester. Polyester is cheaper than. The touch of polyester is very much different from silk. Silk is smooth to touch and it floats easily. Chiffon is a good fabric for a dance costume as many eye-catching costumes can be made from it. You can make flowy circle skirts and drapes with chiffon. If your performance has many air-bound movements then it the best fabric for you. Chiffon keeps the body of the dancer airy.
Satin a natural fabric. It is best for a dance performance if the dance costume requires color dyeing. The color dyeing is good on satin. Satin is also a lightweight fabric. It is opaque. It has a great shine. Satin can be used to make skirts. Its texture has a luxurious feeling. The satin will be used if you want to design a costume that is fit to body. It is not see-through but the lines of the dancer’s body can be made clear to the audience by using this fabric.
This is a fiber that is used to make a fit costume. It a stretch fabric. Spandex is the stretchy fiber found in fabric. You have to select such fabric which contains some percentage of spandex. This fabric is the best to make bodysuits, leotards or any costume that is to be stretched. Instead of using polyester for your stretchable costume you should use a fabric containing spandex. The fabric with spandex is more durable, studier and comfortable.
Velvet has a luxurious texture and makes the costume look expensive. Some of the velvet come with stretch. It is known as jersey velvet. If you want to design a leotard or a mermaid skirt you must go for a jersey velvet. Velvet is a good fabric to hide the imperfection in the body. If you want to hide any body part then you can use velvet for your dance costume. For instance, in the case of belly dance, you can make a bra of velvet. Velvet is the best fabric for beginners. They are feeling shy to expose their body to the audience so they must use velvet.
The dance costume should be selected according to the type of performance. The best dance costume can be made from the above-mentioned fabrics. The costume must be comfortable for the dancer and the audience must be attracted towards it.
A dancer performs to impress the audience. He wants to gain fame. He is not interested in money but the dancer is an artist so he wants to be appreciated by his viewers. He struggles day and night to earn a good name. All his hard work is tested by the audience. The skills and all efforts of a dancer will be judged by his performance. If the performance of the dancer is good then he is successful and has achieved his aim. The dancer not only needs a good body for making his performance fruitful but he needs to focus on every minor thing included in his performance. These things are the background, light effects and above all his dance costume.