Sunday, June 1, 2008

Lost Colony Drama is Back Thanks to the Generosity of Many

'The Lost Colony' returns, with new costumes
Posted: May. 31 10:37 p.m. Updated: 28 minutes ago

Manteo, N.C. — The longest running outdoor drama in the country – "The Lost Colony" – opened its 71st season this weekend with more than 1,000 new costumes, less than a year after a devastating fire.

Only a few costumes that were on exhibit elsewhere survived the September 2007 fire that destroyed the group's costume shop, maintenance building and storage shed. Damage at the Waterside Theatre totally nearly $3 million.

“The whole area ... is deeply rooted in history, and you just hate to see anything with historical value destroyed,” said Tony Duvall, of the Roanoke Island Fire Department.

However, Randi Winter, an actress from Apex, described the opening night as a “new beginning” for the summer show about the disastrous first attempt at a permanent English settlement in the New World in 1587.

Tony-award-winning designer William Ivey Long and his New York-based staff of 60 spent the past month in Manteo attempting to re-creating the costumes. They surrounded themselves with enlarged photos of costumes from previous years for inspiration.

"This has been the greatest challenge and, for me, the greatest assignment of my entire life," Long said.

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