Costume designer Jess Goldstein took on a big job when he signed on to design the many costumes for the world premire of Heart of a Soldier. The opera spans six decades and four continents. Just the soldiers alone must be outfitted in gear appropriate for World War II, early 1960s Rhodesia and the Vietnam War. The main characters, Rick Rescorla, his best friend Dan Hill and his wife Susan Rescorla, are not mythical characters but real people--Dan and Susan will be attending this opera when it opens on September 10. To find inspiration for the look of each of the main character's costumes as well as the various locations and time periods depicted, Jess assembled a collection of design inspiration boards. Read on to see the images that inpired each of the costumes seen in Heart of a Soldier.
Cyril (Rick) Rescorla as a young boy.
The American GIs young Cyril meets in his hometown of Hayle in Cornwall, England in 1944.
Cyril is devastated by the sudden departure of the American GIs he has met. Little did the young boy know that these soldiers were leaving for what would be known as the infamous D-Day invasion of Normandy. Many of the soldiers Cyril met did not return.
Now a grown man and British soldier, Rick Rescorla is stationed in Northern Rhodesia (modern-day Zimbabwe) in 1962. It is here he meets his best friend, Dan Hill.
Rick Rescorla has decided to join the United States Army and is now a U.S. citizen. Rick and Dan both go to Fort Benning, Georgia in 1965 to prepare for what they hope will be a just war in Vietnam.
Rick Rescorla, now stationed at the Ia Drang River Valley in Vietnam, leads his troops into the Battle of X-Ray. In another location, Dan is being overrun by the Viet Cong with the army unable to send help. Rick gathers his best men for a subversive mission which successfully saves his friend.
In Dallas in 1972, Rick marries his first wife.
Dan Hill follows the voice of an Imam and converts to Islam in search of a renewed sense of order.
In 1998, Rick Rescorla is the head of security for a company in the World Trade Center. He rigorously runs evacuation drills despite the protests of the employees.
On September 11, 2001 Rick and the other workers watch as horror unfolds in the North Tower of the World Trade Center. Despite the Port Authority's directive to remain at their desks, Rick orders and evacuation and the employees reenact their well-rehearsed drill.
Rick Rescorla, to be portrayed by Thomas Hamson.
Susan Rescorla, Rick's beloved second wife, to be portrayed by Melody Moore.
Dan Hill, to be portrayed by William Burden.