The One The Only...... Bobby Darin

Bobby Darin

When coming up with a design for my leotards there are many factors that influence the design. And for this particular leotard, the major influence was the music and the themes of the music.

So a little rational on this musical theme and singer!! The artist is Bobby Darin, who was an American singer, songwriter and actor. His height of fame was during the 50’s and 60’s (mostly), and tragically died at the age of 37. One of the amazing things about Darin was when he was a young boy he had bouts of rheumatic fever and doctors said he would do well to live to the age of fifteen.

“ I knew then if I could live to ten, maybe I’d make it to fifteen, and then maybe twenty. And from then on music was the most important thing in my life.” (Beyond the Sea, 2004)

In 2004 Kevin Spacey, directed and stared in the movie Beyond the Sea, a movie about the life of Darin. For this film Spacey insisted that he sing all of Darin’s song, which works perfectly, especially when your trying to create a story through the music, as the talking is in the same tone as the singing.

As for this particular musical cut, it uses three songs from the movie sound track, Young Lovers, Lazy River and Mack the Knife. All are what you could classify as big band, with lots of trumpets and pizzazz.

From the above information is where I start to thing about ideas, forms and colours that could match this routine and music. The classic thought for a 50’s big band piece is usually black and white; these two tones are the epitome of this era and are very striking on stage. However I was thinking something much more, something different… which in a way is how Darin lived his life.

Going on that idea track, I ended up with the colour light pink, which I guess is a little different and looked at the type of necklines that were prominent around that era. I knew that I wanted a more conservative look through the neckline but also something that showed a real class as well. The only other thing I was definite on was the skirt!! Tassels galore :) :)

Oh and of course lots of sparkle.

I can’t really explain where the design came from, it really was a just an idea that I had in my head and then drew on a piece of paper.

The one concern I had for this leotard was the flesh through the centre; as I was unsure if it would look right, but I knew if it didn’t look right that I should be able fix it. What I was really worried about was that the flesh wouldn’t keep its form and therefore I would lose the straight lines.

Luckily that didn’t happen, and it worked out :)

One issued I faced after I had cut out the material was that I had cut the armholes too low at the front. Which wasn’t much of a concern because I don’t think it would have exposed anything. But if I was the hire the costume out it may be a concern on others, so therefore I add a little extra flesh for the sides. The flesh also had added benefit because the lycra used was a little bit see through, so I continued the flesh underneath the top half of the leotard.

Then it was time to make this leotard sparkle even more.

This leotard required a lot of hand sewing through metal chain that had no stretch, and gave myself a sore finger! Also sewing the fringing of the skirt and the stretch diamantes on the back and front didnt help either.

All the stones on this leotard are glued on even the one that can be sewn on are glued to. Just to save yourself the time and hassle.

From all report this leotard sparkled like crazy in stage :)