Instagrammers: If you are on Instagram hashtag your favorite tutu photo of you or anyone #balletfreaktutu and tag @balletfreak (do both) and I will pick a winner from each platform and give them a shout out on my Ballet Freak Instagram Wednesday (Over 28k followers).
Tutu worn by Margot Fonteyn in Swan Lake , 1964
Happy Tutu Day!!! A whole day dedicated to all of the incredibly beautiful tutus throughout the ballet world. From romantic tutus in Giselle to pancake tutus in Swan Lake, they are one of the major things that makes a ballerina a ballerina.
I personally love the tutus that are slightly droopy, such as the ones from LeCorsaire. I also love love love the red Kitri tutu. It’s impossible to choose a favorite.
My friend Juliette Bosco (Ellison Ballet) in her Kitri tutu.
Svetlana looking stunning, as usual, in her Kitri tutu.
The amount of hours of detail and work that’s goes into making a tutu so stunning is incredible. It can take take up to several weeks to complete a tutu and can possibly cost up to thousands of dollars to create. It really depends on the role, ballet, and the company.
Pharaoh’s Daughter tutu.
Tutus originally started very low to the ground, like romantic tutus. In the 16th century, skirts were brought above the ankle, which was a shock to most people back then! They were originally created shorter to work on footwork. Marie Camargo (Paris Opera Ballet 1726) was known for making the above the ankle skirt more well known.
In 1832 the first romantic tutu to be worn on stage was worn by Marie Taglioni in the production of La Sylphide. This was performed at the Paris Opera.
In the 19th century, Italian dancers began wearing shorter skirts that came just below the knee, more like romantic tutus. It eventually evolved into the pancake tutu which shows off the whole leg.
In the pancake tutu everything is seen! All of your technique is shown, which is kind of nerve racking, but it can create such beauty when done and worked with correctly.
The first time I wore a tutu it kind of threw me off a bit. Obviously it adds a different weight to your dancing in pirouettes and jumps. You are to change the movements of your port de bras slightly due to the placement of the tutu.
Romantic tutus were created to give the illusion of lightness and a floating sensation. You will see these tutus in the ballet Giselle and Chopiniana.
Photos from Het National Ballet.
Could the tutu die out? Apparently there is a shortage of costume makers! Stitchers work behind the scenes and often go with out much credit. “A good opera house seamstress has the same skills as a surgeon, it’s just that she’s lower-paid.” Opera Philadelphia’s costume director Millie Hiibel . Hopefully someone reading this blog is the next Karinska or Miro. We need you!
Costume for Ballet Imperial, 1964. Via New York City Ballet by Barbara Karinska
Costumes de Barbara Karinska – Coppélia (acte 2), Coppélia (acte 1)
Couture Tutu! This costume was sold by the New York City Ballet. (c) NYCB
Joan Miro (1895-1983) – La couleur des rêves
Karinska Ballett-Tutu 10413
Ballet:Sleeping Beauty Rudolf Nureyev after Marius Petipa CHOREOGRAPHER: Rudolf Nureyev after Marius Petipa DESIGNER: COSTUMER: Nicholas Georgiadis PRODUCTION DATE: 1989 PRODUCED IN: Opera / Garnier, Paris Opera National de Par: Elisabeth Maurin.