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Stories of Stevenson: Vicka Liokumovich

Communications Team
article banner for Stories of Stevenson featuring student Vicka Liokumovich
theatre student Vicka Liokumovich in the design closet backstage

Stevenson student Vicka Liokumovich backstage in the wardrobe.

Making a Prom dress. From scratch.

The magnitude of senior Vicka Liokumovich’s current project is not lost on her. Especially since, just two years ago, Liokumovich didn’t even know how to sew. At all.

"Well, I wanted a challenge," Liokumovich laughed.

But now, with Clothing And Design classes at Stevenson under her belt, and a wealth of experience as a member of the costume crew of multiple Stevenson theater performances, Liokumovich is like a seamstress extraordinaire and the challenge of making her own Prom dress is more fun than terrifying.

“It’s going to be made out of this lime green, shiny satin fabric and green glittery tulle fabric,” Liokumovich said of her dress. “I got the inspiration looking at photos on Pintrest. I’m working on the bodice right now. I’m excited. I think it will be a fun challenge to make something cool that I can wear.”

theatre student performing onstage during Clue

Mrs. Peacock on-stage with her feather hat hand-made by Vicka.

Usually, Liokumovich is making (or altering, or designing, or shopping for) something cool that others can wear, as she did most recently in the fall play “Clue,” as the lead costume designer, a role that students (it’s usually an adult member of the staff) rarely receive. Liokumovich had a hand in all of the costumes, but her favorite was making the whimsical feather hat (pictured left) that fit Mrs. Peacock and her persona perfectly.

A four-year member of Stevenson Backstage, Liokumovich is one of the many talented people behind the scenes who makes the Patriot Theatre Company nationally-recognized at the high school level. And she epitomizes the idea that while Stevenson boasts plenty of forward-facing stars within the student population that get regular recognition, there are many stars who shine just as brightly without all the fanfare: a perfect Stories Of Stevenson selection.

“I just think that you should work hard and understand that although sometimes your effort may not be recognized in the same way as someone who is out there more, your work is still important,” Liokumovich said. “It’s on stage and it creates the setting in the production. And that is still recognized by the audience even if they don’t consciously register that. Every aspect of theater is extremely important in how the story is told and the Patriot Theatre Company tries really hard to create that feeling of inclusivity.”

As a freshman, Liokumovich began with the PTC as a member of the Build Crew. She got an itch to move over to Costume Design the following year.

“I wanted to try something new. I had no experience in sewing at all. But I was like, ‘I’m just going to show up to Costume Crew,'” said Liokumovich, who is also part of the Knitting Club and National Honor Society. “You don’t have to come in knowing how to sew, which I didn’t. They’ll teach you in Costume Crew. I didn’t know how to use a sewing machine or hand sew and now I do. It’s a great thing. I’ve picked up so many new skills.”

Liokumovich, who has worked approximately 20 theater shows at Stevenson, was put to the test in her role for “Clue.” She read the script multiple times to get a feel for the characters and their personalities and how they would likely dress. She took to the Internet to research color schemes and applicable historical periods and to pull photos of inspiration.

“I wanted all the characters in “Clue” to actually have the color they embody. Like Miss Scarlet in red,” Liokumovich said. “I really liked getting to play around with all these fun colors. Then I drew renderings and gave a presentation and was communicating a lot with the director…what was the director’s vision, what was my vision. It was a lot of fun.”

Liokumovich, who will also be working Costume Design for the upcoming Fall Musical “Beauty And The Beast,” envisions herself continuing to be involved in theater beyond Stevenson, and she’s getting even more great experience for her college resume as part of the Illinois All-State Musical Team that is working on a production of Shrek that will be performed in January at the University of Illinois as a collaboration of the state’s best theater students. She is one of six Stevenson students selected for the team.

"For costumes, we all took a trip to Chicago and went to a store with a ton of rooms with fabric. It’s where I got my Prom dress fabric,” Liokumovich said. “It was fun and it makes me want to try to make other clothes for myself. I think I’d like to keep going with this (costume design) in college, and for as long as I can. It's a passion for me.”