Sunday, November 27, 2011

Dressing a Musician

A fellow tour mate and blogger, Rachel, did a little photo shoot with me and our violist yesterday. Her blog is called Fashion on Tour. In the spirit of our upcoming photo shoot and interview on her blog, I decided to go a little further into whys and whats musicians wear when performing. These are just my favorites and my opinions and probably don't jive with others, but I have been doing this for quite sometime and I've had my share of fashion mishaps when performing. Trust me, I can remember the concerts where I wore that shirt that was see-through or those pants that were too tight. I can't remember the music because I was too focused on my comfort level.
Here's an example of a great pant to wear for a concert. I love tuxedo pants. They are a quick way to make you feel really dressed up and ready to play a great concert. I have a pair of Calvin Klein tuxedo pants that I bring out whenever I have an "important" concert.

These are my go to pants for performing. They are from the Limited. I think they make a great pant. They hold up really well after laundering and you never have to worry about pressing them. Which is a total plus when you're driving to and from gigs. 

For the pit something more casual is just right. Playing 8 shows a week means comfort is key. These are my favorite pit jeans. They are from Sebastian McCall. They are a medium rise so you aren't spending the whole gig pulling up your pants. They have a little stretch in them too so you can actually breathe when playing.

I love this top because the detail is high. This means while I'm playing the audience could actually see it. Having a cute detail in the middle or bottom gets lost once my horn is up. This is also a stretchy material, again making it easier to breathe. 

I love this flowy top. The sheer sleeves make it fun and unique. It also would look great on a string player as they were bowing. The flowy sleeves are perfect for that. This top is also great for that "post giant dinner" show when you don't want anything clinging to you.

I'm a huge fan of an empire waist shirt to perform in. Anything that stays away from my stomach when I'm playing makes me so much more comfortable. I'm a wind player, so yes I obsess about my stomach when playing. Plus, I love the detail on this shirt. I know this sounds vain, but if I feel good in my clothes I know I'll play better. It's all part of the show you put on.
Shoes must be closed-toed. Every group you play with specifies this. I love flats because I'm tall and heels mess up where my horn hits my face. Remember, the horn sits on my leg. If I raise it up with heels, I have to change how I play. I love this Steve Madden pair because they would look fancy but also comfortable.

These are a great little kitten heel. They seem like they would be sturdy. This is important for almost all musicians as keeping on feet on the group and solid is important to playing. I like the bow detail because it would peek out.

If I were to play in a heel, I would pick a wedge like these. The wedge would give me more support. They are also easier to walk in. I love the suede on this one too. 

Now pardon me for this slight change of topic, but I have to discuss classical musician soloists. I have gone to numerous concerts where the soloists has the worst style. I know these people do not have stylists, but I think maybe they should. Here is my biggest rule for soloists.
Don't wear spaghetti straps- sitting in the top row of a concert hall, we only see an ill-fitting dress. We have no clue the spaghetti strap even exists. 
Take this dress for example, you're the soloist for go for it: metallic, bright colors, shiny, lots of big details. That's what we want to see. I love the gold metallic dress and the one-shoulder is on the perfect side for a violin soloist.

This has opera star written all over it. The bright color and big collar will look great even from the nose-bleed seats. The big shiny belt is perfect too.

This is such a beautiful color. I love the flowy sleeve and big flower detail.

This is such a modern looking dress. The color would really pop against the black of an orchestra. The straps are just big enough that they would be seen from a far distance. The fit of this dress is really great too.

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