The Utah Shakespearean Festival is now booking appearances for its popular Costume Cavalcade touring presentation of nearly 50 costumes from the festival's wardrobe department.

The lively program, narrated by USF founder Fred C. Adams, is an hourlong fund-raiser for the festival. It has been presented everywhere from high school cafeterias to the Governor's Mansion and many points in between.Costumes from two of the 1991 season's productions - "Hamlet" and "The Taming of the Shrew" - will be among those shown by 10 models.

The program begins with costumes from "King Lear," showing that in 1000 A.D. clothing was essentially utilitarian. It was used for warmth and covering, and had to wear well since materials to replace clothing were hard to come by. Fashion was a very minor point 1,000 years ago.

The program "is an excellent way to talk about some seemingly strange fashions" down through history, according to Roger Bean, festival marketing director.

For instance, there was one time when both men and women kept their arms warm by trapping small rodents inside their sleeves. Or the men from the time of "The Merry Wives of Windsor" who, desiring the opulent look of the wealthy, padded the fronts of their coats to give them a well-fed look.

One of the cavalcade's real attention-grabbers is "the monster" - the coronation gown of Queen Elizabeth I. The gown, which weighs in at 75 pounds, is a struggle for the model, but the original gown is said to have weighed 300 pounds (and Queen Elizabeth was hospitalized after her coronation because of the attire's weight and warmth).

"We annually make the Costume Cavalcade tour to promote Southern Utah University and the festival and to raise money for SUU theater arts scholarships," said Bean.

To arrange a booking of the show, call 586-1968 or write to:

Marketing Office

Utah Shakespearean Festival

26 S. 200 West

Cedar City, UT 84720