Museum of Human Achievement
"..."Impudence." It's a word that's thrown around a lot in Oliver Goldsmith's 1773 play She Stoops to Conquer. But this is not an uncommon theme in comedies of manners, which one could easily argue is the most fitting generic classification for this play..."
"...The Zachary Scott Theatre Center's staging of Crowns was recognized seven times (for Outstanding Production of Music Theater, Dave Steakley's direction, Allen Robertson's musical direction, Jason Amato's lighting design, and the performances of Jacqui Cross, Tim Curry, and Janis Stinson). Garnering six nods each were Zach's version of the 9/11 drama Omnium-Gatherum (nominated for Outstanding Drama, Steakley's direction, Amato's lighting, Robertson's sound, and the performances of Janelle Buchanan and Helen Merino) and the Austin Shakespeare Festival's latest take on A Midsummer Night's Dream (nominated for Outstanding Comedy and the work of directors Guy Roberts and Ian Manners, costume designer Buffy Manners, sound designer Phillip Montoya, and actors Corey Gagne and Jill Blackwood)..."
"...The gondola scene is handled in a particularly creative way. Mark Novick's lights and Joel Mercado-See's sound design help to forge a perfect Elizabethan environment capped off by Buffy Manners' exquisite costume design..."
"...He loves science and reading, and he doesn't understand complex social cues. He and Mary are meant to be, and there are some plot complications, but they fall in love in the beautiful Pemberley drawing room (set by Mike Toner) wearing great clothes (costumes by Buffy Manners)...."
"...Zac Thomas furthers the introspection as Beebe, an explorer thought dead by his companions, who has returned from captivity among monks of an undisclosed martial art. Where Luigi represents "othering," Beebe goes full Orientalism in a strange hat and robes (among the many perfect costumes by Buffy Manners), leading an unseen army with guttural grunts, leaping about the stage in a nearly acrobatic fighting fashion..."
"...Disjointed though the play may be, Austin Playhouse Producing Artistic Director Don Toner focuses on its strengths and turns a bunt into a double with some strong performances, giving us what I imagine is the best possible production of a play that could use some more time in the farm system. Buffy Manners' costumes are perfect, and the set is an interesting mix of physical elements and digital projection, used to great effect by designer Mike Toner and sound/video designer Joel Mercado-See..."
"...Tracy's first husband is played by Jason Newman, who exhibits a strength that comes from genuine affection wrapped in cockiness. Michael Stuart is hilarious as Uncle Willy, sporting a referenced toupee by costume designer Buffy Manners, who drapes every actor in both character- and period-perfect attire..."
"...Although watching the stagehands Tetris the space into new locales is fascinating, it does draw one out of the story a bit – but as soon as Don Day's magnificent lighting comes up, the actors pull us right back in. Legendary costumer Buffy Manners drapes her actors to match their station, most notably removing the wig Osborn dons for the first act in favor of her natural, badass, pixie-esque hair for the second..."
"...The lighting, by Jennifer Rogers, appropriately captured the sun's struggle to pierce the dense growth around us, making each ray of light a gift. Buffy Manners' costumes worked very well, particularly for those actors portraying trees – part human, part spirit, part nature, each with its own identity and soul...."
"...Lyn Koenning's musical direction and Buffy Manners' costumes punch up the razzle-dazzle and bring the audience back to the Jazz Age. Unfortunately, the same cannot be said of Desiderio Roybal's set design or Don Day's lighting, both of which are far too minimalistic for a play that requires a high level of showmanship..."
"...The production has minor flaws: Some of Buffy Manners' costumes are graceful, but others are mismatched; razor-edge humor occasionally gets lost in overacting; and the storefront's air-conditioner drowns out Bryan Schneider's sound. This Lady Windermere's Fan feels more like a cupcake than a petit four: the icing is a little rough around the edges..."
"...Kathryn Eader's magical lighting brings oranges, purples, and greens into the picture. And Buffy Manners' hip costumes outfit the morally ambiguous supporting characters Lucio, Pompey, and Mistress Overdone in pinks, reds, and yellows..."
"...Though the plot itself is rather stock in nature, Toner and his cast do a commendable job of utilizing devices like heightened physical comedy (think slapstick), Laugh-In-style door play for near-misses and close calls, and lots of furniture acrobatics to bring the sometimes-too-predictable script to life. Buffy Manners' excellent and colorful costumes likewise heighten each character individually but also unify the whole, providing an especially fun palette while contributing generously to the storytelling with flair...."
"...Toner might never have considered producing any of Ayckbourn's almost six dozen plays more dramas than Neil Simon and Bill Shakespeare combined, the director jokes but when surveys of the Austin Playhouse audience indicated that Ayckbourn was a writer they were interested in, Toner thought he ought to give the plays a look. At the suggestion of costume designer Buffy Manners, he read House and Garden and, to his surprise, loved them..."
"...This is essentially the same version that the State produced last December, with an adaptation by British playwright Neil Bartlett, set by David Potts, costumes by Buffy Manners, and sound by the Gunn Brothers, but it's a perfectly packaged production. Bartlett's adaptation doffs its hat to the text of Charles Dickens' 1843 novella, entertaining us with that familiar Victorian style and charm as well as ringing heavily with favorite carols...."
"...Haddock), More's wife, Alice (Janet Hurley Kimlicko), and daughter Margaret (Lara Toner). They are dressed for refinement; Buffy Manners' ornate Tudor costumes, heavy with velvets, bullion, and coifs, put the characters decorously in the 16th century and upstage the less noble gray set...."
"...Buffy Manners, Henry V/The Merry Wives of Windsor/Mrs. Warren's Profession..."
"...The production is lovely -- with Buffy Manners' sumptuous period costumes, Tony Tucci's handsome lighting, and Christopher McCollum's elegant set making a picture almost as pretty as Ford Madox Brown's painting -- but what Kanoff and his sterling production team do is something more than please the eye; they prick the mind and heart. They make things matter...."
"...This great tub of a man sees himself as a chick magnet, a world-class seducer, a hunka hunka burnin' love who can woo two wives at once with neither the wiser. Who else has that kind of charisma and sexual prowess but Elvis? In this guise (realized in gloriously appalling fashion by costumer Buffy Manners), we can immediately see that his ego matches his girth, and he's headed for a big fall...."
"...Mixed into the action were modern pop songs that I believe were meant to comment cleverly on it, but these also added only time. (That these songs were some of the more polished pieces in the show is unfortunate, since the actors stumbled over Shakespeare's text more than a few times.) While Buffy Manners' costumes mixed pre-modern and modern silhouettes to interesting effect, the colors didn't add up to any consistent palette..."