Costume Supervisor

  • Full Time
  • Chicago

Website Victory Gardens Theater

Your World on Stage

About Victory Gardens

Founded in 1974, Victory Gardens nurtures and produces relevant, new theater work that reflects the diverse stories of our world and contributes to the vitality of the American Theater. Our work inspires dialogue towards meaningful civic change and creates an inclusive theater experience that belongs to everyone. Our vision is to be the leader in bringing stories to the stage that help ignite social change for a better world, through new work commissioning and development, education initiatives, community engagement, and our Access Project (serving patrons and artists with disabilities).

Victory Gardens Theater provides equal employment opportunities (EEO) to all employees and applicants for employment without regard to race, color, religion, sex, gender, sexual orientation, national origin, pregnancy, age, disability, or genetics. In addition to federal law requirements, Victory Gardens Theater complies with applicable state and local laws governing nondiscrimination in employment. This policy applies to all terms and conditions of employment, including recruiting, hiring, placement, promotion, termination, leaves of absence, compensation, and training.

Job Summary:

The Costume Supervisor is responsible for the realization of costume designs for a season of 3-5 mainstage productions presented in Victory Gardens Theater’s 259-seat, proscenium Začek McVay Theater (ZMT), the 109-seat, studio Richard Christiansen Theater (RCT), and virtually.

Primary Responsibilities:

  • Review and interpret costume plots, vision boards, and renderings to assess financial and practical feasibility of costume designs.  Develop budget estimates based on preliminary designs and provide suggestions for adjustments as-needed.
  • Collaborate with Designers and Directors to determine appropriate materials, elements, solutions for the safe execution of costume, hair, and make-up designs in accordance with the artistic goals of each production as possible within the available time, material, and labor resources.
  • Gather actor measurements.
  • Hire, schedule, and supervise costume, wardrobe, and hair and make-up personnel for build and run of each production.
  • Coordinate rentals and purchases including in-person and online shopping (with the designer and independently as needed) and make all necessary returns.
  • Be present and assist with all fitting and note sessions and implement alterations.
  • Create and/or update, maintain, and distribute all costume paperwork.
  • Notify Director of Production and Technical Director of any potential hazards which should be included in the risk assessment for each production and assure that all backstage costume areas are ready and safe ahead of actors transitioning to stage.
  • Ensure Wardrobe Supervisor is trained on prep, dressing, quick rigging, and maintenance costume, hair, and make-up elements for each production.
  • Coordinate understudy costumes.
  • Coordinate dry cleaning and other maintenance needs for costumes and wigs.
  • Serve as show run cover for Wardrobe Supervisor for all productions.
  • Collaborate with Director of Production to determine which element should be added to VGT stock, sold, or donated at the end of each run and strike each production accordingly.
  • Exercise responsibility and accountability for all costume department labor and material budgets including the timely approval and submission of credit card receipts, invoices, OPRs (out-of-pocket reimbursements), mileage logs, and payroll.
  • Maintain all costume files and documents ensuring that records of all productions are archived and easily accessible.
  • Ensure accurate inventory, maintenance, and storage of all costume stock, equipment, tools, and supplies.
  • Attend and participate in staff meetings, production meetings, rehearsals, and previews as requested by the Director of Production.
  • Collaborate with Production Management to support the ongoing needs of Victory Gardens Theater. Including but not limited to: accurately tracking lifespan of costume inventory and equipment, prioritizing maintenance and upgrades of equipment and tools, creating long term plans for capital equipment purchases, and developing and maintaining health and safety guidelines.

Qualifications and Required Technical Knowledge and Skills:

  • Thorough knowledge of costume technologies including draping, sewing, dyeing, quick change rigging techniques, and costume crafts.
  • Ability to read and interpret costume plots, vision boards, and renderings to provide accurate budget, labor, and timeline estimates.
  • Experience with shopping, renting, and building costume elements.
  • Creative problem-solving skills and ability to research new techniques and materials.
  • Demonstrated ability to manage multiple projects and to navigate shifting and competing priorities with patience and diplomacy.
  • 2-4 years of professional or equivalent educational experience in theatrical costume construction.
  • Experience running backstage costume tracks preferred.
  • Experience with wig maintenance preferred.
  • Excellent written and verbal communication skills.
  • Ability to lift 35lb.
  • Able to work independently or as part of a team.
  • Full vaccination against covid-19 is required, as this role will have regular contact with VG artists and staff.  VGT will be adhering to AEA’s fully vaccinated company protocol.
Instructions to Apply:

Please send a letter of interest and resume with three references with subject line “Costume Supervisor” to ProductionJobs@VictoryGardens.Org.

To apply for this job please visit

Pay Rate/Range*: Part-time, non-exempt, hourly Schedule: flexible; average 20 hours/week over the year; up to 40+ during tech/previews, fewer hours/week during down periods; daytime hours with some nights and weekends. $18.00/hour; time and half after 40 hours/week. Sick paid is earned at a rate of 1/40 hours worked and rolls over from year to year.