Saturday, January 7, 2012

Retrospective: Christian Lacroix`s Costumes for the Paris Opera Ballet


Christian Lacroix created 130 costumes for 'La Source', including 39 original designs, decorated with over two million Swarovski Elements.


Embroidery, tiaras, saris and fairy costumes emerged from the close collaboration between the workrooms of the Opéra national de Paris and Swarovski, blending ethnic influences and classical taste, enhanced by the sparkle of crystal.


The beautiful production played at the prestigious Opéra national de Paris, from 22nd October to 12th November 2011.


'La Source' is a typical nineteenth century ballet in which romanticism vies with orientalism, and yet the plot highlights the relationship between Man and Nature in a surprisingly modern way.


Persian palaces and fragile nature form a perfect setting for Christian Lacroix`s imagination to conjure up a sumptuous and dreamlike world of Elves, Nymphs, Khans and Odalisques.


The legendary and fantastical world of Persia serves as a backdrop for the thwarted love affairs of the hunter Djemil, the beautiful Nouredda and Naïla, the spirit of the spring.


It is a ballet in two acts and three tableaux. The Libretto is based on the work by Charles Nuitter and Arthur Saint-Léon.


The light and colourful score brought were together by the renowned 19th century composer Leo Delibes and his Austrian contemporary Ludwig Minkus.


The libretto by Arthur Saint-Léon and Charles Nuitter draws on Wagnerian romanticism, orientalism and Shakespearian influences, and contrasts the real world with the realm of elves, nymphs and ethereal beings.


For his first creation for the Paris National Opera Ballet, Jean-Guillaume Bart, Principal Dancer, takes this storyline and revives a forgotten work from the dance repertoire, which was created at the Paris Opera in 1866.


Working closely with Clément Hervieu-Léger, Jean-Guillaume Bart restores the original freshness of La Source. He creates a major story full of dance, poetry and virtuosity, enhanced by Christian Lacroix`s flamboyant costumes and an evocative and moving set by Eric Ruf.

La Source (saison 2011-2012)
The master at work.


Pictures are property of Swarovski. Photography: Anne Deniau / Opéra national de Paris


  1. Gorgeous pictures!
    Thanks for sharing!

  2. Oh wow, those costumes are absolutely divine! What an honor it must be to dance in them.

  3. Hi found you on IFB. I love these sketches they're so unique. I love the first one :)

    Sing Simple

  4. Such an amazing post, really inspirational! Gorgeous pictures, thanks for sharing!


  5. Thank you for your sweet message at IFB! Great post!

    xx Marije

  6. So beautiful. More than anything, these make me want to be a ballet dancer!