a wing view of the stage

How American Ballet Theatre’s Production Team Makes Magic Happen Onstage During Swan Lake

When the curtain rises on American Ballet Theatre’s Swan Lake, the audience falls under the spell of the dancing, tragic romance, and moonlight. What they don’t see is the backstage sorcery that makes the magic happen, an elaborate choreography carried out by an ace crew of nearly 80 costumers, dressers, makeup artists, carpenters, property masters, lighting operators, and stagehands—the unsung heroes of the story.

What Makes a ‘Good’ Costume? Three Perspectives

For many of us, a costume completes the transition from the rehearsal process to a stage-ready performance. But the components of what makes a “good” costume can vary significantly. Dance Magazine spoke to a ballet dancer, a wardrobe supervisor and a dance critic to find out what they believe makes for a successful costume. Jon […]

Make 'Em Last: 6 Tips for Costume Care

Everything from makeup and sweat to quick changes and props can end up shortening the lifespan of your favorite costumes. Dance Magazine asked costume shop directors for the tricks of the trade they use to keep their garments looking (and smelling) as fresh as the day they were made. Get Organized Linda Lee, the wardrobe […]

From Costume Design to Choreography, Stephen Galloway Sees Infinite Possibilities

Most people in the ballet world know the iconic green, pancake-flat tutus of William Forsythe’s The Vertiginous Thrill of Exactitude (1996). But they might not know that it was principal dancer Stephen Galloway who designed them. For much of his career at Ballett Frankfurt, he was also the company’s head costume designer and style coordinator. Galloway—whose grandmother […]

SFB Principal Dores André Brings Her Dancer's Eye to Costume Design

San Francisco Ballet principal Dores André has long had an interest in fashion. In recent years she’s become a costume designer in her own right, creating looks for Estonian National Ballet, Ballet Idaho and, most recently, Royal New Zealand Ballet’s Sleeping Beauty. Designing for dancers while being one herself gives her a unique way of […]

Peek Inside Three Major Costume Shops of Ballet, Broadway and Ballroom

In much the same way that choreography and performance create a storyline, costumes can transport an audience into a certain mood or time period with fabrics alone. Three costume departments gave us an inside look at how they prep for ballets, Broadway shows and performances on the road. Rachel Papo Marc Happel 1 / 9 […]