Queen Revisit Their Stage Wardrobe Through The Years
via FREE MOVIES / YouTube
The latest episode of “Queen: The Greatest Live” examines Queen’s iconic stage attire as part of the series’ ongoing investigation into the elements—rehearsals, opening numbers, and lighting—that contribute to a Queen performance being the ultimate live experience.
In a rare interview, Brian May and Roger Taylor explain the inspiration for their unforgettable on-stage ensembles. It’s no secret which member of the band was the most invested in their wardrobe selections for performances.
“The clothes are part of it, and no one was more aware of that than Freddie,” May said. “Freddie really pioneered a lot of stuff and we came out of an era which was called glam, where people in rock groups realized that they could dress up and look fancy and make a big splash. But it was all very kind of random. And what we tried to do was, I guess, call on the traditions of opera and other art forms and make the costumes speak for us, make them part of the storytelling. So, Freddie, with his little wings on his suits and all his of crowns and paraphernalia, also the black and white stuff, which we got into, and it’s all designed to be dramatic. It’s designed to accentuate our movements and accentuate the moods of the songs.”
Legendary garments were the outcome of the partnership with stylist Zandra Rhodes, but it was soon clear that the band members were not all comfortable in such ostentatious attire. “At the beginning, many years ago, there was this big thing, you know, that we wanted Zandra Rhodes to do everything. Well, she made me a costume. I wore it once. It was so bloody hot I never wore it again. It was completely impractical.”
Roger continued: “And I don’t really like the word costume because with ‘costume’ I think of kids, or I think of pantomime or, you know, and this isn’t costumes, this is meant to be rock and roll. So I don’t really have a costume. And also, being drums, it’s pretty sweaty. You need something where you can move that is not hampering you in any way.”
Watch the full episode below.