Do we spot a trend emerging here? On Tuesday it was announced that the brilliant Italian designer, Kinder Aggugini was set to design the costumes for the English National Ballet’s production of The Rite of Spring and today news has reached us that Rodarte sister-designers, Kate and Laura Mulleavy, are poised to design the costumes for the Los Angeles Philharmonic’s production of Mozart’s opera Don Giovanni.
The Mulleavy sisters were approached following their gig last year when they designed the costumes for Black Swan. Laura told the LA Times that ‘It only took a few seconds to say ‘yes.’ My grandmother sang opera, and if she were alive today, this would be her proudest moment.’ The girls added that their costumes aren’t going to be historical pieces, saying they ‘won’t be oriented to a period in history but will be more abstract.'
Kinder Aggugini, meanwhile, is working with the English National Ballet for a second time – he previously designed a one-off piece for their charity party last summer, and was then approached by Wayne Eagling (Artistic Director at the ENB) and Lady MacMillan to discuss The Rite of Spring.
Aggugini told Vogue that ‘I was thrilled to be given the opportunity to redesign MacMillan's ballet… The guidelines for ballet costumes are quite strict, so on top of an appearance one has to consider functionality and durability.’
He then went on to add, brilliantly, ‘I guess it's a bit like designing a Batman outfit’ (at which point we like to imagine a lot of startled looking ballet-types making ‘have we made a terrible mistake here’ faces) before adding ‘but in this case there was also a clear vision from one of the most revered British choreographers who created possibly the most successful version of this Ballets Russes piece… This is what makes this project so special - it's not just a costume, it's the resurgence of an iconic work of art’.
We love this. And not just because it makes us feel culturally smug.