Working from home? Switch to the DIGITAL edition of Stage Directions. CLICK HERE to signup now!
Generic selectors
Exact matches only
Search in title
Search in content
Search in posts
Search in pages

Jeanna DiPaolo Named the 2020 Recipient of Willa Kim Costume Design Scholarship

Stage Directions • Industry News • June 23, 2020

Jeanna DiPaolo

Theatre Communications Group (TCG) announces Jeanna DiPaolo as the recipient of The Willa Kim Costume Design Scholarship 2020. Administered by TCG with support from The Estate of Willa Kim, the Scholarship provides exceptionally talented costume designers who are enrolled in a university or professional training program with the opportunity to supplement their fine arts training in hand-drawing and painting. The Scholarship honors costume designer Willa Kim’s legacy and her life’s work as a pioneer, legend, and inspiration for many of today’s theatre artists.

“Costume design is a centuries-old craft, and Willa Kim wanted to ensure that early-career costume designers could fully develop their skills in the arts of painting and hand-drawing, and not just rely on software,” said Teresa Eyring, executive director, TCG. “Thanks to The Estate of Willa Kim, this scholarship program will continue to empower recipients in strengthening their craft and deepening the range of their artistry.”

“Willa Kim was deeply committed to ensuring that the next generation of costume designers have the skills to visually communicate their artistic voice,’ said Emilya Cachapero, director of artistic and international programs, TCG.’ TCG is thrilled to honor her legacy by offering this scholarship to exceptionally talented designers who will soon take their place in the professional theatre.”

The 2020 recipient is:
Jeanna DiPaolo an upcoming senior at SUNY Purchase college, studying for a BFA in Costume Design. She grew up in Upstate New York, Averill Park. As a child she remembers sitting wide-eyed next to her Grandma and Dad watching old Hollywood films. The dazzling costumes of Orry-Kelly, Edith Head, and Travis Banton mesmerized her. She began sewing outfits for her dolls and gradually began designing and making costumes for all her school plays. The combination and interaction of art, history, fashion, and human behavior influences every character she designs. You can see more of DiPaolo’s work at her website:

Jeanna DiPaolo’s costume designs for Bastille Day

Scholarship recipients receive up to $7,500 to be used towards tuition, registration fees, supplies and/or travel expenses over a one-year period between June 1, 2020 – June 30, 2021.

Further information on the Willa Kim Design Scholarship:

The Willa Kim Costume Design Scholarship panel included Jess Goldstein, freelance costume designer (New York, NY); Andre Harrington, costume designer and theatre arts associate professor, California State University, San Bernardino (San Bernardino, CA); and Irina Kruzhilina, costume designer and visual dramaturg (New York, NY).

Willa Kim was a costume designer for ballet, theatre, opera, and television. Among many honors were Tony Awards for Duke Ellington’s Sophisticated Ladies and Tommy Tune’s The Will Rogers Follies, and Tony nominations for Peter Allen’s Legs Diamond, Andrew Lloyd Webber’s Song & Dance, Bob Fosse’s Dancin’, and Joel Grey’s Goodtime Charley. She won Drama Desk Awards for Jean Genet’s The Screens, Irene Fornes’ Promenade, and Sam Shepard’s Operation Sidewinder; Obie Awards for Robert Lowell’s The Old Glory and Lanie Robertson’s Woman Before A Glass; and Emmy Awards for the PBS broadcasts of Michael Smuin’s ballets The Tempest and A Song For Dead Warriors. Ms. Kim received lifetime achievement awards from the Fashion Institute of Technology and the United States Institute for Theatre Technology. The Theatre Development Fund honored her with the Irene Sharaff Lifetime Achievement Award, and in 2007 she was inducted into the Theatre Hall of Fame.

Further information from the Theatre Communications Group (TCG):


The Latest News and Gear in Your Inbox - Sign Up Today!