Anyone who was lucky enough to get to the V&A’s blockbuster exhibition on the Ballets Russes in 2010 will agree that it was a real eye-opener. Sergei Diaghilev may not be a common household name but through his magnetic creative energy and boundless vision he managed to draw together many creative personalities that were – and still are – household names.
Coco Chanel, Igor Stravinsky, Pablo Picasso – some of the greatest talents of Diaghilev’s era brought their creative influence to the Ballets Russes table, creating one of the richest profusions of talent to have ever been seen on stage.
In tribute to this great meeting of minds, this season the English National Ballet is creating its own ode to the Ballets Russes, with a season beginning on March 27th called Beyond the Ballets Russes - and the designer they have chosen to re-imagine the costumes is Kinder Aggugini.
The designer found a challenge in designing for ballet, as costumes must be multi-functional and durable as well as having aesthetic appeal. ‘It’s a bit like designing a Batman outfit,’ said the designer, ‘but it’s not just a costume, it’s the resurgence of an iconic work of art.’