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Theatre costume

  • Date:

    1968 (made)

  • Artist/Maker:

    Marzot, Vera (Costume designer)

  • Materials and Techniques:

    Brocade, felt, synthetic fabric, vilene, lace, net, iridescent beads, cotton

  • Credit Line:

    Given by the Royal Opera House

  • Museum number:

    S.22-2003

  • Gallery location:

    In Storage

Physical description

Full length evening dress in white brocade with low v neck front and back, over a knee length skirt with a peplum over the hips, and full length underskirt. The exaggerated wired cap sleeves have permanently pleated extensions on the lower edge and inner short sleeves of synthetic chiffon trimmed a double permanently pleated frill. The peplum, skirt and underskirt have similar permanently pleated insets The dress is decorated at neck, around peplum and both skirt edges with bold black and white felt appliques based on crescents and curves, set with medallions of black lace highlighted with iridescent beads or white or black smaller medallions. Under the sleeves are shoulder extensions in pleated vilene. The bodice is boned and the dress is lined in white cotton, the lower hem being lined with a deep frills in black synthetic fabric and black vilene. The back fastening closes with hooks and eyes.

Date

1968 (made)

Artist/maker

Marzot, Vera (Costume designer)

Materials and Techniques

Brocade, felt, synthetic fabric, vilene, lace, net, iridescent beads, cotton

Marks and inscriptions

"(printed) ROYAL OPERA HOUSE / PRODUCTION: (handwritten) TRAVIATA / (printed) ACT: (handwritten) III (printed) SCENE: / Character (handwritten) PURCELL / Name (handwritten) GILLING (crossed out) / (crossed out illegible) / (printed) COVENT GARDEN"
Label; Back neck right

Dimensions

Weight: 2.3 kg Dress weight, Width: 76 cm Dress, width, shoulder maximum width, Length: 160 cm Dress, collar to hem

Object history note

The costume was designed for Lucino Visconti's famous black and white Beardesleyesque production of Verdi's opera La Traviata, premiered by the Royal Opera in 1968. Vera Marzot designed the costumes. This dress is a ball dress for Act III and was worn by a member of the chorus.

Historical significance: Visconti's famous black and white production of Verdi's opera La Traviata, premiered by the Royal Opera in 1968 translated the action to the 1890s, taking as its inspiration the illustrations of Aubrey Beardsley. The costume is an excellent example of period costume making where the costume clearly shows the period in which it was designed in its cut and fabrics, particularly the brocade and the sunray permanently pleated inserts.

Descriptive line

Costume designed Vera Marzot for a member of the Chorus in Act III of Verdi's opera La Traviata, Royal Opera 1968.

Materials

Brocade; Felt; Synthetic fabric; Vilene; Lace; Net (textile); Beads; Cotton (textile)

Techniques

Machine stitching; Hand stitching

Collection

Theatre and Performance Collection

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