Costume Designer and Costume Shop Manager

Mel Benson has been the costume shop manager for Florentine Opera since 2011 and was part of the world-premiere production of Robert Aldridge & Herschel Garfein’s opera Sister Carrie. She holds a bachelor’s from the University of Northern Colorado and an MFA in Costume Technology from the Professional Theatre Training Program at the University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee.

Costume design credits include Florentine Opera’s educational tour The Three Little Pigs, Little Red’s Most Unusual Day, Pinocchio, Goldie B Locks and the Three Singing Bears, Jack and the Beanstalk, Billy Goats Gruff and A Busy Bee (the world-premiere children’s opera composed and written by Florentine staff pianist Ruben Piirainen). She has also designed and produced the BMO Harris Holiday display in downtown Milwaukee since 2009.  Previously, she worked at First Stage Children’s Theatre as the Cutter/Draper and Olympus Group producing walk around mascots.

L’incoronazione di Poppea is Ms. Benson’s Florentine Opera mainstage debut.