Costumes!! So many beautiful costumes! We are so lucky at the Royal Danish Ballet to have a super talented costume department that makes THE most incredible costumes! I’m absolutely blown away by what I get to wear on stage. They are amazing!
I am 100% a tutu person.
I love all tutu’s! To be extremely specific, my favorite costumes are
the tutu’s that are considered to be “small”. For example, the tutu I
wore for Theme & Variations or for Diamonds.
The tutus used for more of the classical ballets such as Swan Lake or Sleeping Beauty, or Raymonda are also very beautiful but they can be quite large! The smaller tutus just feel like they fit the best.
Here are some of my favorite tutu’s!!
My other favorite type of costume is a leotard with a flowy skirt. For example, Ballo Della Regina or T. Pas.
I’m a fan of dancing in a tight fitting costume that doesn’t get in my way. 😉 Here are some of my favorite flowy dresses.
Soon (April 2020!!) in Come Fly Away, I will get to wear the costume below and I’m positive that it will be going on my favorite costume list! I mean look at those sparkles!!
Costume fittings are the best!! I think it is so much fun when you are
called to one. It is the time where you get that first sneak peek of
what you’ll be wearing on stage! It makes it all the more real and
We are so
lucky at the Royal Danish Ballet, because we have absolutely the most
talented costume department and the nicest, hands down. The men and
women that work in the costume department are absolutely sweethearts.
They care so much about the dancers and you can feel it when you are
with them trying on their beautiful creations. I’m a huge, HUGE fan of
the costume department.
When you get called for a costume
fitting, your name will be written on the schedule. (My name is written
in red, along with the time I am called on the schedule to the left.)
The fittings are usually pretty quick (around 5-10 min.) but it does
depend on if you are trying on a costume, that has already been made or
one that is being created for the first time.
When you try
on a costume, that has already been made, many times it was made on
someone else. We keep costumes for years! Which is cool when you try on a
costume, that has a name of a past ballerina that you admire! Legend-
wear! The costume department comes prepared, as they’ve taken the time
to figure out, who’s measurements are the closest to yours and pulled
that costume for you to try on. Then, only slight alterations are
When you are
called for a costume fitting for a brand new ballet, that has all new
costumes, then it will take a bit longer. Anywhere from ten minutes to
two hours. When a fitting takes a long time, it is usually because the
designer is able to be at the fitting. Therefore more ideas are
discussed and bounced back and forth. It’s actually pretty cool to
witness their artistic thought process about their creations.
I recently was
called to a fitting for the up and coming World Premiere of, Karen
Blixen. Choreography by Gregory Dean. Scenography and costume design by
Jon Morrell. Music by Claude Debussy. Composer and musical arrangement
by Martin Yates. It is very exciting!
You go to the costume department at the
time you are called and meet one of the seamstresses. They will help you
get dressed and then they start pinning! Pinning everything. A waist
that needs to go in, a hem that needs to be shortened, a sleeve that
needs to be attached, a neckline lowered… the list of possibilities goes
on and on.
I’m usually quite chatty at costume fittings.
It’s a nice, ten minute break from rehearsal, where I get to share
stories of my summer, or show lots of pictures of my cat. (Guilty)
Once they are
done pinning, they help you slip out of the costume without piercing
yourself and off you go, back in to rehearsal.
department is a magical place where all the beauty is created. I love
them. Best “coffee break” anyone could ask for.
In fact, we do! And thank goodness! We
have the most lovely colleagues that specifically help us with our
costumes during a show and full costume rehearsals. We call them,
Dressers. There are two dressers for every floor of dressing rooms.
Approximately 12 dressers are in the house on a performance night.
If you are the lead female and male
dancer of the evening, you have your very own dresser. They help you
with any costume changes, or anything that you could possible need
throughout the night. It’s like having a guardian angel, helping you
bring your best to the stage. They even bring you a glass of water in
the wings. Which is totally going above and beyond their job but very
A dresser arrives to the theater around
6:30pm/7pm. They check the casting for the night and then put everyone’s
costume in to their personal dressing room, including hair pieces and
accessories. Then, they sit in the hallway waiting patiently for us to
come out of our rooms to help us get dressed. All strings must be tucked
away and all accessories on before we head down to the stage.
The dressers stay for the entire
performance. Sometimes they are needed during the show for quick costume
changes. For example, during Alice In Wonderland many people were
playing several different characters in one show which required quick
changes. In this scenario, the dressers are back stage with us.
Otherwise, they sit by our dressing rooms waiting for us to come up from
the stage and to help us get out of our costumes.
It is a complete luxury to have such
lovely colleagues helping us getting dressed and undressed. They deserve
a huge round of applause for all that they do for us behind the scenes.