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Painting - Leonide Massine waiting for his cue to go on stage in 'On With the Dance'
  • Leonide Massine waiting for his cue to go on stage in 'On With the Dance'
    Gluck, born 1895 - died 1978
  • Enlarge image

Leonide Massine waiting for his cue to go on stage in 'On With the Dance'

  • Object:

    Painting

  • Place of origin:

    Great Britain (painted)

  • Date:

    1925 (made)

  • Artist/Maker:

    Gluck, born 1895 - died 1978 (painter (artist))

  • Materials and Techniques:

    Oil on canvas, in a wooden frame covered with white paper designed by the artist

  • Credit Line:

    Given by the British Theatre Museum Association

  • Museum number:

    S.83-1986

  • Gallery location:

    Theatre & Performance, Room 104, case 22, shelf 1

This behind-the-scenes image shows the danseur Massine waiting to go on stage in Cochran's revue, On With the Dance, at the London Pavillion, 1925. The performance was scene 7 of the revue, choreographed by Massine, an adaptation of Hogarth's series of paintings A Rake's Progress, simply entitled The Rake.

The scene was painted by Gluck, an artist well-known in the 1920s and 30s for her portraits and floral paintings. Her full name was Hannah Gluckstein but she insisted on being known only as Gluck, distancing herself from her society family, whom she scandalised with her exclusively male attire and lesbian relationships. Identifying with no artistic school or movement, she exhibited her work only in solo exhibitions, where they were displayed in a special frame she invented and patented. The "Gluck frame" extended from the wall in three tiers; painted or papered to match the wall on which it hung, the paintings became part of the architecture of the room. This painting is in a white-painted Gluck frame not visible in the image.

Physical description

The painting shows the four figures with the framework of the back of the scenery. The dancer Massine, second from right, is about to make his entrance from offstage in his costume of red breeches, green jacket, white stockings and tied back hair for The Rake. The other men are stage technicians.

The painting is in a 'Gluck Frame', made for the picture by the artist, which is white and consists of three stepped rectangles made of wood covered with paper.

Place of Origin

Great Britain (painted)

Date

1925 (made)

Artist/maker

Gluck, born 1895 - died 1978 (painter (artist))

Materials and Techniques

Oil on canvas, in a wooden frame covered with white paper designed by the artist

Dimensions

Height: 60 cm, Width: 50 cm

Object history note

Painting included in and originally sold at Gluck's 1926 exhibition, 'Stage and Country', at the Fine Art Society, London. The exhibition included several paintings of scenes from On With the Dance. Given to the British Theatre Museum Association by Mrs Prince Littler in November 1968.

Descriptive line

Painting entitled "Leonide Massine waiting for his cue to go on stage in 'On With the Dance'" by Gluck, 1925.

Bibliographic References (Citation, Note/Abstract, NAL no)

Ashton, Geoffrey. Catalogue of Paintings at the Theatre Museum, London. ed. James Fowler, London : Victoria and Albert Museum, 1992. 224p. ill. ISBN 1851771026
This object features in 'Out on Display: A selection of LGBTQ-related objects on display in the V&A', a booklet created by the V&A's LGBTQ Working Group. First developed and distributed to coincide with the 2014 Pride in London Parade, the guide was then expanded for the Queer and Now Friday Late that took place in February 2015.

Labels and date

Leonide Massine Waiting for his Cue to go on Stage in ‘On with the Dance’
1925

The painting shows the dancer Massine about to make his first entrance. This is his last private moment ‘offstage’ before he appears in front of his audience. The cloth-capped stagehand and the framework of the back of the scenery illustrate the world ‘behind the scenes’ that is hidden from the public.

Revue by Noel Coward and Philip Braham, 1925
London Pavilion

Oil on canvas
Painted by Gluck (Hannah Gluckstein) (1895–1978)
Given by British Theatre Museum Association
Museum no. S.83-1986 []

Materials

Oil colour; Canvas; Wood; Paper

Techniques

Painting (image-making)

Subjects depicted

Dancing

Categories

Paintings; Gender and Sexuality; Entertainment & Leisure; Dance

Collection

Theatre and Performance Collection

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