Second year BA (Hons) Costume student, Nikki Konkoly, spent her summer holiday in her home town of Budapest dressing the international cast of Sweeney Todd, The Demon Barber of Fleet Street.

She told us more about the project:

It was the second time I had the opportunity to work with American-Hungarian director, Peter Schueller, who founded esō theatricals, an English language theatre company in Budapest, with the purpose of bringing expats and locals together through English plays and musicals.

I had already worked with him this spring, sourcing costumes for a community theatre show featuring a medley of musical songs, but this September he staged Sweeney Todd, the musical, with a semi-professional, highly talented, international cast and live orchestra, which was very well received by the audience.

I helped him as a costume designer and supervisor, scenic artist, translator, graphic designer, and practically anything I could do.

As it is an emerging theatre company, this was a low-budget production, which meant lots of scavenging in second hand shops – something I thoroughly enjoy.

The director’s concept was to use mostly modern clothes with period accessories, so I sourced lots of cheap second hand and vintage items, and completed the outfits with period hats, capes, pelerines, and cravats, which I hired from the main costume warehouse in Budapest’s filmmaking district.

The white, red, and black used in most main characters’ costumes symbolise corruption, blood and murder, whilst the light and navy blues stand for innocence and hope.

Designing costumes and set for such a special community means I’ve found the perfect niche for my soon-to-be profession, as it is in my beloved hometown, but still requires my English and design skills I will have acquired by the time I graduate from AUB next summer – I can’t wait to work with them again in just a couple of months.”