by Roderic David, Fashion Publishing
On the evening of Sunday September 8, a group of Parsons students were lucky enough to go on what is probably the most coveted field trip in town: a backstage tour of New York Fashion Week. As part of Alison Levy’s Fashion Show Production & Publicity class, students went behind the scenes at the tents at Mercedes Benz Fashion Week at Lincoln Center.
In total, IMG occupies the space at Lincoln Center for five weeks–Eighteen days to put up the tents, fashion week itself, and another week of tear down.
Students walked between the three main venues – the Box, the Studio and the Stage – catching glimpses of the backstage hair, makeup and dressing areas, while learning a few secrets along the way. How do venues transition from designer to designer so quickly? Each has two backstage prep areas, so while one designer’s show is walking down the runway, another designer’s team is beginning getting the models into hair and makeup. Another one of the backstage area’s best kept secret is its VIP entrance and holding area so celebrities, top editors and other VIP guests can easily get to their seats, and have a private place to wait between shows.
It’s been long assumed that the best seats during fashion week are on the front rows, but for special American Express cardholders, skyboxes overlooking the Stage and Theater offer a unique experience for watching the shows, and sometimes serve as a place to chat with a designer after the show.
Before or in between shows, guests can gather in the lobby where there are places to grab a quick snack, pick up a copy of WWD or the Daily Front Row, and check out Twitter and Instagram updates on the social media wall. A key component of what makes Mercedes-Benz Fashion Week run so smoothly are the Fashion GPS kiosks located throughout the lobby which allows guests to check themselves in and print their own seating assignments prior to the show.
For a class about putting together fashion shows, no trip would be complete without seeing one, and the evening ended by watching the Emerson by Jackie Fraser-Swan Spring 2014 show.