In the 1990s, three long-time friends decided to take their career paths into their own hands by starting a performance group that combined art, music and comedy. They shaved their heads bald, wore an all black ensemble and last but not least, painted themselves a signature bright blue. Chris Wink, Phil Stanton and Matt Goldman made up the Blue Man Group, who have since evolved into Blue Man Productions—a global entertainment company best known for the award-winning Blue Man Group show that today puts on performances in over 20 countries.
For the first time ever, the trio will be debuting a new look conceptualized by fashion designer, Hudson County native and “Project Runway” alum Helen Castillo. The collaboration fuses Blue Man Group’s 90’s, underground aesthetic with a more contemporary, utilitarian vibe.
“After seeing Blue Man Group live in New York City, I was inspired by and particularly drawn to the overall aesthetic of the theatre and the industrial elements of the stage,” Castillo explained. “Of course, Blue Man Group is an iconic part of New York City’s performance art history and a household name I grew up with. All of this, coupled with how the Blue Man Group originated in the 90’s, which is trending right now in fashion, felt like the perfect time to collaborate together on a limited edition, unisex garment.”
Castillo referenced one of her favorite parts of the show, when the Blue Men grab a member out of the audience, dress them in coveralls and splatter them in paint. To her surprise, it was that very moment that served as the inspiration for her design. “I created a coverall jumpsuit sourced from lightweight cotton canvas material to embody the literal canvas of the performance piece and then added hints of the iconic Blue Men blue for details on my design.”
The concept, Castillo explained, was to pretend as if the audience and Blue Men members had become one. The jumpsuit itself serves as a uniform that, no pun intended, unities the audience and the performers.
“In terms of the Blue Man Group-inspired jumpsuit I created, I knew I wanted the garment to be unisex, utilitarian and to create a sort of unity between the Blue Man Group and the audience,” said Castillo. “I love that with this Blue Man Group-inspired jumpsuit, I am helping to give fans a tangible piece of the show experience and a nod to 90’s trends with the color blocking of the collar, tuxedo stripe and pocket flaps.”
After spending time dabbling in menswear, Castillo used her research and impeccable tailoring techniques to craft a unisex garment that she described as “ iconic, yet fresh and familiar.”
The Blue Man Group will be rocking their new look at Castillo’s show during New York Fashion Week on September 9th. And if you like what you see, the limited edition Blue Man Group-inspired jumpsuit will be available for purchase on Castillo’s website beginning in September. Also, keep an eye out for Castillo’s full-size feature in The Digest’s upcoming fashion issue.