I didn’t start out to be a Costume Designer. All I ever wanted was to be a famous ballerina!

I was born in a small town in England, daughter of a British father, a doctor, and a Canadian mother. The family of five eventually immigrated to my mother’s home town of Toronto. At the tender age of 15, and at 5’6 height, I was asked to join the National Ballet Company of Canada on their first visit to Washington DC -- a dream come true!   I danced in Swan Lake and Giselle.

A year later I had grown 2” taller and was too tall for ballet! I drowned my sorrow with acting lessons and 4 years at university studying History of Art. The morning after I wrote my last exam I left for Boston, Mass. where I had been given the opportunity to audition for My Fair Lady, the National Company, and spent the next year touring all over the United States, not even making it to my graduation ceremony.

The next few years saw me dancing on Broadway in several well known shows. It was a great time on Broadway - Barbara Streisand was just down the street in Funny Girl, Carol Channing was at the St James Theatre in Hello Dolly, Sammy Davis was near by in Golden Boy, and there was an abundance of incredible shows.  I graduated to acting roles in such plays as The Odd Couple (playing Gwendolyn Pigeon)and also found time to be one of the six iconic showgirls in the original film The Producers. (Check out the Beer Stein Girl!).

I eventually found myself moving to Los Angeles where I had a brief career acting in films and TV shows before meeting a producer for the Ann-Margret Show, who offered me the job of co-ordinating all the dancers wardrobe for her big Las Vegas nightclub act. What followed was an amazing run with Ann Margret and Roger Smith, on and off for a number of years, and which led me to meet Bob Mackie. Bob asked me to be his assistant on the production of the Las Vegas show Jubilee, and basically I spend the next 2 years learning almost everything I know about costume design from Bob. I am forever indebted to him and his associate designers Pete Menefee and Ret Turner.

In 1985 I got my first job as full Costume Designer for The Facts of Life, which I did until the show’s end in 1988. Many sitcoms followed, then a year with the soap opera Santa Barbara, then a number of episodic dramas, television movies and feature films, not to mention stage productions whenever I could fit them in.

After my last Hollywood position as Costume Designer for NBC’s Passions, which I had for 5 years, my husband, Dominic Calandra and I decided to semi-retire in Las Vegas. Now he is working as an actor in Tony and Tina’s Wedding, and I, who love to work, am busier than ever with designing films, and mentoring young people into the business.

I love my life, and thank everyone for their part in it. I have learned so much from all my experiences, and wouldn’t have missed out on them for anything. Now I want to work with the next generation of film-makers, designers, and artists.


TAMARA, Los Angeles and New York Productions,  Drama-Logue Award and LA Drama Critics Award

RAISIN, International City Theatre


ONE SLIGHT HITCH, Falcon Theatre

HOW THE OTHER HALF LOVES, Pasadena Playhouse

THE GRAPES OF WRATH, West Coast Ensemble

AMY'S VIEW, International City Theatre: Carol Lawrence

SWINGING ON A STAR, International City Theatre

TAMARA; Drama-Logue Award and LA Drama, Critics Award

MERRILY WE ROLL ALONG, West Coast Ensemble

BEGUILED AGAIN, International City Theatre

GRAND NIGHT FOR SINGING, International City Theatre

ALL MY SONS, International City Theatre

EQUUS, Pasadena Playhouse

ONLY A KINGDOM, Pasadena Playhouse

HAPPY HOLIDAYS, Pasadena Playhouse

ANGELS SHARE, Tiffany Theater, with Paula Prentiss and Salome Jens

THE DEARLY DEPARTED, Court Theatre Drama-Logue Award

NIJINSKY SPEAKS, Los Angeles and New York

A COUPLA WHITE CHICKS..., Hollywood Playhouse, with Elizabeth Ashley and Anne Archer

IN THE BOOM BOOM ROOM, Long Beach Theatre Festival, with Jill Claybergh, Ron Silver

ECCENTRICITIES OF A NIGHTINGALE, Long Beach Theatre Festival, with Sandy Dennis, Perry King

STREAMERS, Westwood Playhouse, with Richard Thomas, Randy Quaid, Charles Durning

NO NO NANETTE, Long Beach Civic Light Opera

MAN OF LA MANCHA, Long Beach Civic Light Opera


THE PHILADELPHIA STORY, Callboard Theatre, with Carolyn

BLOOMERS, Beverly Hills Playhouse

SLAB BOYS, North Hollywood Playhouse

DREAM GIRL, Room for Theatre Drama-Logue Award

DON JUAN IN HELL, Room for Theatre, with Claudette Nevins

LIGHT UP THE SKY, Room for Theatre Drama-Logue Award

A LOVELY LIGHT, with Marion Ross


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About Me