Talks, tours and visitors from overseas

Costumes from The Rite of Spring 1913

The last two weeks have seen a positive flood of presentations on the exhibition with tours for special groups and up to three talks a day. The talks have been to student groups, ballet organisations and other enthusiasts. One student group from Brighton specifically asked for a presentation focusing on the challenges of displaying theatrical costumes. The photos of costumes from The Rite of Spring show how they were displayed in Spotlight in the V&A in 1981 and how they are being displayed now. The majority of talks have been at the museum although I’ve been seeing a fair bit of seeing England, too. Its great that there has been such a strong interest. This evening I am doing a presentation to Friends of the V&A of some of the designs for the Ballets Russes in WID which were not selected for inclusion in the V&A exhibition including some framed up which will go on tour.

One of the Ivans design by Léon Bakst for the final scene of The Sleeping Princess 1921. This will be included in the exhibition’s overseas tour

Next week looks a little quieter but, of course it culminates on Saturday 4 December with the study day BEHIND THE SCENES AT THE BALLETS RUSSES with presentations from Claudia Jeschke on choreography, Gavin Plumley on Stravinsky’s music, Anthony Parton on Goncharova, Clare Rose on Léon Bakst and members of our Textile Conservation team on the challenges of conserving and mounting costumes. Geoff and I will also be contributing.

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This has also been an interesting week with visitors from New Zealand, Australia, Russia and Sweden. I have also learnt that several friends have decided they simply have to come to see the exhibition – so piggy banks are being raided in Australia and the USA to make it possible.