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Léon Bakst

Waleria Dorogova

Source: Fashion Photography Archive 2015

Article

Léon Bakst (1866–1924), while not a style icon in the conventional sense, is well known to have profoundly influenced fashion throughout the twentieth century. Vanity Fair declared as early as 1914 that Bakst “has done more to revolutionize costume than any man since Adam.” His vibrant designs for the costumes and settings of the Ballets Russes in the period between 1909 and 1922 have enduringly inspired fashion designers to a substantially higher degree than his less well-known work in couture o

An ‘Informalizing Spurt’ in Clothing Regimes: Court Ballet and the Civilizing Process

Norman R. Gabriel

Source: Dressed to Impress. Looking the Part 2011

Book chapter

The aim of this chapter is refine the model of long-term social processes proposed by Elias (1994) in the Civilizing Process by concentrating on one particular development in the early history of ballet, the transition from court to romantic ballet during the eighteenth and nineteenth centuries in France. According to Carter (1998), dance historiography has suffered from a veneer of glamour, myth and mystery: she argues that the focus on the history of stars and the self-promoting mythologization

Costume Designer

Whitney Blausen

Source: The Berg Companion to Fashion 2010

Encyclopedia entry

An article in the New Idea Women’s Magazine says that by 1906 theatrical costume design firms flourished in most major cities. Some, like Eaves or Van Horn’s, in New York and Philadelphia respectively, began as manufacturers of uniforms or regalia and expanded into the theatrical market. By contrast, Mrs. Caroline Siedle and Mrs. Castel-Bert, both in New York, established their ateliers specifically to cater to the growing theater industry.

Dress as Costume in the Theater and Performing Arts

Sandra Lee Evenson

Source: Berg Encyclopedia of World Dress and Fashion. Global Perspectives 2010

Encyclopedia entry

In costume, individuals become characters of plays. Dressing for the performing arts works the same way. The performing arts include theater, dance, opera, films, television, and the circus. Costumes are made up of supplements to the body such as gowns and wigs, also including body modifications like makeup. Stylized Japanese Noh masks completely transform actors and constitute artwork in themselves. Throughout most of the history of theater, actors had to supply their own makeup and costumes, bu

Beaton, Cecil

Nancy Hall-Duncan

Source: The Berg Companion to Fashion 2010

Encyclopedia entry

The most important influence on Beaton’s fashion photography was his interest in stage design and theatrical production, in which he was extremely accomplished. He did costume design for the film Gigi and set and costume design for the play and the film My Fair Lady, receiving Oscars for both. He also designed for the Metropolitan Opera, the Comédie Française, the Royal Ballet (London), and the American Ballet Theatre. “Completely stage struck” at an early age, he wrote in his Photobiography that

Ballet Costume

Thomas Hecht

Source: The Berg Companion to Fashion 2010

Encyclopedia entry

The origins of ballet lie in the court spectacles of the Renaissance in France and Italy, and evidence of costumes specifically for ballet can be dated to the early fifteenth century. Illustrations from this period show the importance of masks and clothing for spectacles. Splendor at court was strongly reflected in luxuriously designed ballet costumes. Cotton and silk were mixed with flax woven into semitransparent gauze.

Dance and Fashion

Thomas Hecht

Source: The Berg Companion to Fashion 2010

Encyclopedia entry

The nineteenth century was dedicated to the waltz, which had developed as a bourgeois activity in Europe and America. In May I Have the Pleasure?, Belinda Quirey argues that in the wake of political, romantic, and industrial revolutions, the waltz was a completely new dance form that perfectly suited the new conditions of modern life—socially, psychologically, and materially. These nineteenth-century developments in dance were reflected in elaborate dance costumes for lower-and middle-class women

Costume for Dance

Helena Wulff

Source: Berg Encyclopedia of World Dress and Fashion. West Europe 2010

Encyclopedia entry

The appearance of the tutu (a stiff, delicate ballet skirt made of tulle), together with pointe shoes (which enable ballerinas to dance on pointe, that is, on the tip of their toes) in 1832 in Paris marked the turning point for costumes used for different types of dance in West Europe. Dance costumes have been included in chronological accounts listing ballet and contemporary dance production credits and have also been studied as costumes and garments in their social and cultural contexts, often

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