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Marie Antoinette's stunning costumes at Steppenwolf Theatre

In David Adjmi's play, the French queen is outfitted in gorgeous mashups of couture both old and new

Strutting across a mirrored, runway-style stage in Robert O'Hara's dazzling production upstairs at Steppenwolf Theatre Company, playwright David Adjmi's stylish, gleefully anachronistic take on Marie Antoinette is as much fashion show as biography. We asked Steppenwolf ensemble member Alana Arenas and other members of the cast to give our photographer a closer look at their looks.

Marie Antoinette's cast in costume

Tamberla Perry, Alana Arenas, Ericka Ratcliff and Alan Wilder on the set of Marie Antoinette at Steppenwolf Theatre Company.

Photograph: Brendon Brown

Ratcliff's costume for the play's opening scene throws a hashtag.

Photograph: Brendon Brown

Arenas's title character proudly notes that she wears her hair so high, carriage roofs had to be raised. "It's heavy, but I've gotten used to it," Arenas says of her opening-scene wig. "You've gotta build up the neck muscles."

Photograph: Brendon Brown

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Tamberla Perry sports a Drake-worthy motto.

Photograph: Brendon Brown

Floral themes recur in both Clint Ramos's scenic design and Dede M. Ayite's costumes, like the roses layered into Marie's first skirt.

Photograph: Brendon Brown

Steppenwolf ensemble member Alan Wilder plays the Sheep, a farm animal that delivers warnings to Marie in hallucinatory sequences. Ayite and wig and makeup designer Dave Bova suggest a sheep's clothing that recalls Elton John.

Photograph: Brendon Brown

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Perry, Ariel Shafir and Arenas pose in another look from Marie Antoinette.

Photograph: Brendon Brown

Shafir plays Axel Fersen, the Swedish count who may have had an affair with Marie.

Photograph: Brendon Brown

Perry models an Italian-silk cocktail dress with pockets as a confidant of the queen.

Photograph: Brendon Brown

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Arenas's Marie surveys her kingdom in Steppenwolf's Upstairs Theatre. Apparently the inverse of "the higher the hair, the closer to God" is "the further removed from your people."

Photograph: Brendon Brown

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