Haute couture found its way into the theatre in 1924, when Sergej Pavlovich Diaghilev (1872-1929) invited Coco Chanel to design the costumes for Le Train Bleu, a new ballet for the legendary Ballets Russes company, based on an ironic story conceived by Cocteau depicting the seaside escapades of upper class Parisians holidaying on the Côte d'Azur; the stage design was by Picasso.
During the twentieth century Italian fashion was also involved in theatre. From the early eighties onwards the most prestigious opera and ballet companies collaborated with the great Italian stylists: Armani, Balestra, Capucci, Coveri, Fendi, Ferretti, Gigli, Marras, Missoni, Prada, Ungaro, Valentino and Versace.
Through sketches, drawings, costume designs and videos of performances, this exhibition examines one of the most glamorous moments of modern international theatre, thus bringing together for the first time the theatrical output of some of the greatest contemporary designers.
Gianni Versace, Tutù con calzamaglia, 1991 (top)
Ottavio Missoni, Costumi Africa, 1990
Antonio Marras, Costume Ippolita, 2008