Natalie Portman in Black Swan
Fashion is no stranger to the world of dance – from last year’s cinematic fashion extravaganza where the Rodarte sisters tulled-up the Black Swan cast to Coco Chanel designing costumes for Diaghliev’s revolutionary Ballet Russes way back in the 1910s – there’s plenty of evidence to prove it. Heck! Even leotards are the still the number one on-stage choice for everyone from Gaga to Madge.
Kinder Aggugini's costumes for The Rite of Spring
But back to the here and now, and two very exciting fashion and dance related stories caught our attention this week. First up, Milan-born LFW-circuit designer Kinder Aggugini’s debut designs for the English National Ballet have just enjoyed their first live performance and we’re excited to hear that Brit designer Gareth Pugh (who actually trained as a ballet dancer and showed off his surprise skill set recently at the Selfridges Film Project in a short film of him doing a very convincing Sally Bowles in Cabaret) will be pirouetting his design skills in the same direction, but for a Royal Ballet production created by trail-blazing choreographer Wayne McGregor, called ‘Carbon Life’ and opening on April 5. We’ll bring you images very soon, of course….
Kinder gives the leg-warmer look a little update!
“The guidelines for ballet costumes are quite strict, so on top of an appearance one has to consider functionality and durability. I guess it's a bit like designing a Batman outfit…” Kinder has said of the 50 costumes he’s designed for the National Ballet’s ‘The Rite of Spring’. “At the opening night after the first performance, I was so overjoyed I wanted to hug all of them.”
So will we all be putting on a tutu and heading to the nearest barre with enthusiastic jazz hands? Probably not. In fact, what’s really so innovative about the new take on high fashion in dance is that it’s pushing boundaries and not relying on the costume ideas of the past. It’s more of an cultural shift darrrlings - as predicted by yours truly back in early January.