We continue our series of video interviews with the creative staff behind A Gentleman’s Guide to Love & Murder with this look at the 200 props being assembled or built for the show. Props designer Patricia Bilello talks about where she finds props for a show that is set in the early 1900s, and gives a few sneak peeks at the ones currently in use at rehearsals. Watch the video below, or read the transcript.
What’s your role in A Gentleman’s Guide to Love & Murder?
My name is Patricia Bilello, and I am the props designer for this show. This show has about 200 props.
Where do you find the props for this show?
The first place you go is to the warehouse. We have plenty of props over there we use show after show. But if you don’t find them there… my garage. To my friends’ houses. Flea markets and everywhere. If you cannot find them, so, then you make them.
Can you describe the process of building props?
The process is interesting because you imagine one of the props and then the director says, “No, it’s the other way around,” and then you have to look like it’s from that period of time. So you mix all the ideas, and start to working, and then some magic happens and the props is finished, and like, “It’s perfect!” So, it’s a long process, but it’s fun.
What’s the most unusual prop request you’ve had?
A scooter. A scooter is interesting, because it’s not from that period of time, but it has to look like it is — so you have to adapt.
Can you show us one of the props for the show?
This is one of the props that they are not in that period of the time, but it’s going to be in the show. So come over, watch the show, and then find this. What is this for? What is that? The interesting thing about this show is that it is so funny. And there are so many little things, you have to come over twice. Because you missed some of the parts because you were laughing! So come over a second time to have the full experience of the show. It’s really, really funny and you have to come over. And I hope you can make it.