Saturday, November 3, 2007

'Lost Colony' Works to Rebuild Costume Collection

By CATHERINE KOZAK The Virginian-Pilot
Posted: Today at 12:05 a.m. Updated: Today at 6:44 p.m.

Manteo — There's a vibe of intensity, similar to the electricity of being backstage before a show starts.

Usually it's a lot quieter this time of year at The Lost Colony Building, where the business of the nation's longest-running outdoor drama is administered.

But everyone has been on overdrive to recover from the devastating Sept. 11 fire that destroyed the production's costume shop and most of the show's costumes.

Losses, including the building and its contents, have been estimated at $2.7 million. The contents were insured for $40,000, based on the fact that they were always moving from building to building.

Since then, though, show officials said they've been overwhelmed by the outpouring from the public; the show's alumni; the theater, movie and television industries; amateur seamstresses; professional costumers; school children; community businesses; as well as public and private organizations from the Outer Banks and all over the country.

"It's amazing, absolutely amazing," Carl Curnutte, the show's executive director and producer said last month, as he briefly removed the phone from his ear to dash from his office to consult with staff.

In the center room where prospective cast members are auditioned every spring, big boards hold growing lists of names and phone numbers of people who want to help. Donations so far have totaled more than $184,000, not including a $250,000 grant from the Outer Banks Visitors Bureau.

"I'm of the opinion that everything we have to do is doable," said John H. Tucker Jr., the chairman of the board of the Roanoke Island Historical Association, the show's producer. "It's a monumental task, but all of sudden we have discovered that people love 'The Lost Colony.'"

Written by Pulitzer Prize-winning playwright Paul Green, the play tells the saga of the 117 men, women and children who sailed from England in 1587 to Roanoke Island and vanished without a trace.

Full article Here: