Santo Loquasto has to be one of the busiest designers in the world. Theatre, dance, opera, movies — he does it all! He's been nominated for 14 Tony Awards, is a three-time Tony winner, and is also now the most recent winner of the Irene Sharaff Award's special Robert L.B. Tobin Award for Lifetime Achievement in Theatrical Design, presented by Theatre Development Fund's costume collection (which rents costumes to non-profit theatres across the country) on Friday, March 23, at the Hudson Theatre in New York City.
From Sticks and Bones, which opened on March 1, 1972, at the John Golden Theatre on Broadway to the Roundabout Theatre Company's revival of 110 In the Shade, which opens this month at Studio 54, Loquasto has honed his art and craft of set and costume design by way of countless productions, including his three Tony winners, The Cherry Orchard, Café Crown, and Grand Hotel.
At the awards ceremony, Loquasto was quite funny in his remarks, wondering if he was indeed old enough for a lifetime achievement award and perplexed to think that he might actually be. “I have so shrouded my work in dissatisfaction. I would hate to think I had to stop,” he says. “Collaboration is not for sissies, and I would be remiss if I didn't thank the lighting designers who have plunged my work into the dark over the years. You know who you are,“ which brought a big laugh from the standing-room-only audience.
Frank Galati, who directed Ragtime — for which Loquasto designed the costumes, and who presented the award — waxed poetic about the designer, his work, his palette, and his aesthetic. Needless to say, Loquasto has been honored for his body of work to date. There will clearly be many more years of fabulous designs to come in his lifetime.