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avatar for Tim Matheny

Tim Matheny

Mississippi State U
Assistant Professor of Theatre Performance
Starkville, Mississippi
Junkanoo evolved from the days of slavery. The slaves were given three days off during the Christmas season, which they used to celebrate by singing and dancing in colorful masks, traveling from house to house, often on stilts. The amazing costumes of the Junkanoo parade marchers is made completely from cheap or easaily found materials. These massive and elaborate costume pieces become something between costuming, scenery, and sculpture. The pieces are inexpensive to make, durable, and disposable. This workshop will explore the techniques used to develop these costumes and possible applications for the staged production. Through this workshop, we will discuss the history of Junkanoo, the traditional practices of construction, sourcing the needed materials, and potential adaptations for theatrical use. This is a great workshop for high school or community theatres with an abundance of creativity but a smaller budget.

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