The Sopris Sun

Fashion show celebrates the power of ‘SHE’

By John Colson
Sopris Sun Staff Writer


“SHE” takes the stage at this week’s “Green Is The New Black” fashion show, a sold-out fundraiser for the Carbondale Arts organization to be held March 10 and 11 in the Carbondale Recreation and Community Center.

This year’s offering, the show’s creators say, is shaping up to be the most professionally produced extravaganza in the event’s 11-year history.

It also is an homage to the feminine aspect of all human beings, women or men, and in particular it was intended to coincide with the elevation of the first woman to hold the job of leader of the free world, since by last September Hillary Clinton was projected to win the 2016 presidential election.

“When we came up with this theme (last fall) we thought the immediate future would be filled with women leaders,” Kimberly wrote in the show’s program guide, mentioning Angela Merkel of Germany and Theresa May of The United Kingdom, as well as Clinton’s expected victory.

“While that did not happen, this show has taken us on an amazing journey through several different archetypes of SHE,” Kimberly added.

SHE, besides raising funds for CA, offers a chance to shine for a wide array of talented individuals from the Roaring Fork Valley and from other locales around the U.S.

Laura Stover is the chief stylist and design specialist for GITNB (as it is known among the crew), though her overall duties have ranged from searching the internet to find and invite designers who might be interested in participating in the show (there reportedly are 25 designers working on this show) to sewing costumes to be worn on the fashion runway.

Kimberly, Stover and operations manager Deborah Colley are generally acknowledged as the holy trinity of the show’s directors (as they were called in a KDNK radio spot) — Kimberly in overall charge, Colley working to coordinate choreography and music for the show, and Stover taking care of design and a whole lot more.

Stover, 33, came to the valley with her boyfriend, Joseph Tonozzi, about five years ago from California, where the two met and soon decided that Tonozzi’s home territory (the Roaring Fork Valley) would suit them better.

Starting out as a volunteer designer working on the 2012 GITNB (the theme was Back To The Future), by her second year Stover was hired by Kimberly as a paid, part-time staffer (she also does freelance graphics design on the side).

Among the innovations brought to the show in recent years is something called “projection mapping” which typically involves projecting images onto 3-D objects, the moving bodies of dancers and other things. This year, she said, the images will show up on screens that have certain special characteristics, such as transparency so the dancers can be seen through the projected image on the screens.

Others working on the video and mapping have been locals Hamilton Pevec and Austin Latimer, and Evan Gaspar, who formerly worked for the Cincinnati Opera House. Also, animators Wylie Chenoweth (working in 3-D) and Akili Sosa (working on 2-D) have added to the look of the show.

Where Stover’s job description calls for 30 hours per week, as showtime approaches she goes into overdrive.

“I’ve been working all day and probably most of the nights for three weeks now,” she told The Sopris Sun, leaving her energized but tired at the same time.

One aspect of this year’s show that has her feeling good is the color scheme for the dancers’ costumes.

“This year they’re wearing all red — red lips, red shirts, red tights, everything red,” she said. “I’m very excited about it. And what’s great is it’s all of the shades of red. I think it’ll look really good.”

The two shows, on Friday and Saturday nights, have been sold out for weeks, but there reportedly were some tickets ($20 per person) left for the dress rehearsal on Thursday, March 9 (call CA at 963-1680 for the latest). Doors open at 7:30 p.m., the show starts at 8.


Published in The Sopris Sun on March 9, 2017.