The 1950s saw an explosion of all things ballet in popular culture. One of the most prominent artists was Carlotta Edwards (1894 - 1977). Edwards was the daughter of the French painter Ferdinand Pourrier. Her ballet scenes once graced the bedrooms of little girls (and big) all over England but were very popular in Australia and New Zealand. Edwards appears to have… Continue reading Carlotta Edwards – Collecting Vintage Ballet
American Ballet Theatre this season is presenting two ballets from the bright and colourful canon of the Ballets Russes and Ballets Russes de Monte Carlo. On the 6th of June ABT opened The Golden Cockerel, a reworked version of the popular 1937 production created for the Royal Danish Ballet in 2012. Please see my… Continue reading Two treasures of The Russian Ballet at ABT
American Ballet Theatre's new production of Sleeping Beauty had its New York première at the Metropolitan Opera House on the 29th of May. I was involved in the production by researching the 1921 Ballets Russes version of The Sleeping Princess upon which American Ballets Theatre's new production design is based. Designer Richard Hudson used the original designs 1921… Continue reading The Sleeping Beauty Wakes
In less then two weeks Alexei Ratmansky's production of The Sleeping Beauty for American Ballet Theatre will open at the Segerstrom Center for the Arts, Costa Mesa, California. Ratmansky's version of the Imperial Russian classic is based on the 1921 production staged by the Serge Diaghilev and the Ballets Russes. Diaghilev created many links to the original… Continue reading A New Carabosse
I have recently been working at a performing arts school cataloguing their extensive costume collection. Among the costumes stored in the cellar and no longer used by the school I found a unique set of ballet costumes dating from the early days of the Sadler's Wells Ballet and Royal Ballet Companies. I found over 100 costumes from… Continue reading Hidden Treasure
Here are some lovely photographs of one of the Mazurka costumes from Act 5 of the 1921 production of the Sleeping Princess, designed by Bakst. There were originally 12 Mazurka Ladies in this scene. These costume are now all over the world including the Museum of London, National Gallery of Australia, Wadsworth Atheneum and Dansmuseet Stockholm.
In February last year I was asked by designer Richard Hudson and choreographer Alexei Ratmansky to research the Ballets Russes' 1921 production of the Sleeping Princess (Sleeping Beauty) for a new reinterpretation of the ballet. The production was originally designed by Leon Bakst and no expense was spared. The new ballet is a joint venture between American Ballet… Continue reading Waking the Sleeping Princess