at Festival Theatre in downtown St. Croix Falls. “A short video giving an overview of the amazing productions coming to the stage this season is on our website (festivaltheatre.org),” said Festival Theatre board member Melanie Nelson. “In that video, and in our print products this summer, we’re excited to share original drawings by designer Kim Murphy.”
Murphy is a designer and co-owner of Shoop Sculptural Design, Inc with her husband Jim Shoop. She is also no stranger to Festival Theatre. “I started as a costume assistant in 1998 or ‘99, and I worked in that capacity until I had our daughter Sienna in 2003,” said Murphy. Murphy also served on the board of directors at a time when the theatre reorganized with a transitional business plan and completed the 2006 season with a record-setting holiday show, “Hans Brinker, or The Silver Skates”.
After her term on the board she chose to work on specific projects for the theatre, including her current service as volunteer with the development committee. Over the years Murphy and her family have decorated the theater for the holidays, planned and executed events, pruned the shrubs in front of the theatre, assisted with graphic design, and yes, she’s back to designing costumes.
“I started costuming again with ‘Is He Dead’ in 2010. I had missed costuming so I started again by doing one show a year, and now I do two a year!” Murphy graduated from the University of Wisconsin-Madison with a Bachelor of Science in Apparel Design and from The Fashion Institute of Technology - New York with an AAS in Fashion Design.
“I was shocked to find a professional theater in St. Croix Falls and very happy that I could be a part of its survival, growth, history and its future,” said Murphy. “I love to see the changes that happen at the theater with each new season, new actors, growth and development of permanent artists and staff members, and with the volunteers who continue to give. It all comes together to ensure the survival and longevity of a creative hub that is essential to keeping the uniqueness of this little community viable.”
When asked to reflect on her involvement with Festival Theatre for the last 16 years Murphy said, “Being so close to the cities and being a part of such a strong art community in St. Croix Falls has enhanced my life, the life of my children, family and community and that is one of the best parts of living in the valley.”
Festival asked Kim Murphy to sketch a design for each of the produced shows for the 25th Anniversary Season. “we wanted to make this season a little more special and Kim seemed to be the perfect artist to help make that possible” said Pam Fuchs general manager “she has played such important roles here at Festival.”
You can see Murphy’s designs featured on all of Festival’s movie posters and website. You can also see her creative costuming in “A Streetcar Named Desire,” which opens August 1st and runs in rotating rep with “Little Shop of Horrors” and “The Complete Works of William Shakespeare (abridged) [revised]”.