Tag: ballet

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Family Art Fun Christmas and New Year

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This Christmas the V&A Family Art Fun team ran a series of events to celebrate the season. From Monday 28 – Thursday 31 December, three times a day as part of Pop-up Performance, families met the Sugar Plum Fairy, a gingerbread soldier, the Mouse King and Clara and discovered the enchanting world of Christmas Crackers, […]

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A Shifting Snow Maiden

The Little Daughter of the Snow, illustrated by G. I. Narbut, 1906, NAL pressmark 36.BB.1.

Anyone with small children will know that snow maidens have had a resurgence in popularity in the last few years thanks to a certain ubiquitous Disney film, but this is only the latest in a long history of snowy maidens in folk and fairy stories. In this blog I’m going to look at the Russian […]

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The Ballet of Apollo (plus some incredible costumes!)

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Today in 1621 the Ballet d’Apollon (Ballet of Apollo), also known as the Ballet du Roy (the King’s Ballet), was first performed by the Ballet de Cour of Louis XIII. This costume design for role of Apollo the Shepherd in the Ballet d’Apollon will feature in the Europe Galleries’ Music display. The costume consists of a […]

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Queer and Now!

queer and now

And so with another unashamedly promotional post, I am back to announce that the line-up for this month’s Friday Late has now been made public! From the fringes of the underground to the drag divas taking over the mainstream, this is a world where pretty much anything can be ‘queered’. Join us as we turn a […]

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The final curtain

This entry brings the blog for Diaghilev and the Golden Age of the Ballets Russes 1909-1929 to its conclusion. I had hoped to write more about the dismantling of the exhibition but time has run out. Briefly the costumes that had been on open display had to have three days in the freezer before being carefully packed. A large refrigerator was hired for a week of the kind used for ‘Wimbledon and royal events’ to keep food cool. Freezing protects fabrics, killing off any insects and, while we are vigilant and hope to keep the museum free of pests, these …

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Castles in Spain (well factories)

Caxia-Forum, Barcelona While the galleries are being stripped, Diana and I took off for Barcelona where a significant selection of the V&A’s Diaghilev exhibition will be show from October before moving on to Madrid next year. We saw the space where it will be presented in the stunning Caxia-Forum which houses three concurrent exhibitions from all over the world at one time. The one we saw most closely was Roads to Arabia Archaeological treasures from Saudi Arabia. The building was originally a textile factory but designed a century ago in the Catalan art nouveau style by Josep Puig i Cadafalch, …

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I eat my words!

The Ballets Russes on stage during their first visit to the Fêtes des Narcisses when they danced Les Sylphides and Aurora’s Wedding (which is shown in this photograph). The Exhibition build is being dismantled – the cloths are all wrapped up and the technicians taking all the structures down and I shall report further on this as I wrap up this blog BUT I am still leading an exciting life going out and about. At Monday’s Dance Critics Awards at Sadler’s Wells the exhibition received praise from members of the dance profession ( a very welcome acknowledgement) and I am …

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Over

Our last courier arrived from Hamburg today to reclaim the wonderful cartoons of Le Spectre de la rose by Jean Cocteau. Material from the ‘props store’ has been claimed for the Friday late on 25 March which will have a performance theme . Many of the costumes are already crated up on their mannequins for their transatlantic voyage although we have been having some problems with our freezer which has delayed the packing a little. It really is over. The banners in the Sackler Centre have been taken down and the Degas painting of the ballet scene from Meyerbeer’s opera …

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Archives

Alicia Markova in La Chatte and the petty cash receipt in her own hand for her shoes for this ballet The Archival case has been dismantled. This was the last material taken out of its case. It was fun putting this together and although some visitors moved past it quickly others poured over the documents fascinated. The documents ranged from the first contract for Hilda Munnings (about to become Munningsova and later Lydia Sokolova), together with a letter from her father as in 1913 she was underage to sign a legal document, through to a petty cash receipt for Alicia …

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Continuing Mysteries

The cover of the 1915 souvenir programme, note the women’s Kokoshnik headdresses The Nijinsky, Poiret and Matisse cases were de-installed today so many of our star objects have been put away. As all the costumes are packed it is an opportunity to check details – sometimes because of questions received during the exhibition – sometimes because other questions spring to mind. It is fascinating, for example, to look closely at the Snow Maiden’s headscarf for Soleil de nuit spread flat out to appreciate its appliqué. The solo, originally danced by Lydia Lopokova, was added by Massine to his ballet created …

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