chapter  6
13 Pages

Tech, Dress, and Opening Night

WithT. M. Delligatti

Costume designers finesse the details of their design during a period called tech and dress rehearsals. These rehearsals take place in the weeks leading up to opening night.

The costume shop passes the garments into the care of the wardrobe supervisor and the dressers, who aid the actors and maintain the quality of the design. The stages of a technical rehearsal (often shortened to “tech”) include a long period called a 10-out-of-12. Following tech, a show enters a rehearsal period called “previews” where an audience can pay a reduced ticket price to see the show before opening.

Opening night is the final day of a costume designer’s contract. From there, the costume shop maintains the shows. The entire process is complete on the last day of performance where the crew tears down the show in an event called strike.