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Exhibition: Raven Girl The Making of a Ballet

New exhibition including designs, costumes and film charts creation of Wayne McGregor’s Raven Girl.

By Cristina Franchi (Former Exhibitions and Heritage Publications Manager)

19 September 2013 at 10.24am | Comment on this article

Wayne McGregor’s first full-length narrative ballet - Raven Girlhad its premiere last season, and we are offering privileged insight into the process of creating the ballet in a new, free exhibition.

A dark fairytale, created in collaboration with American artist and author Audrey NiffeneggerRaven Girl involved composer Gabriel Yared, designer Vicki Mortimer, lighting designer Lucy Carter, and artist and filmmaker Ravi DeepresRead about Gabriel Yared's experience composing the score for Raven Girl.

The exhibition, which begins in the Carriage Entranceway on the ground floor of the Royal Opera House and continues upstairs in the Amphitheatre Bar, gives intriguing glimpses into the creative process and the many talented individuals involved in bringing a new ballet to the stage.

Royal Opera House Collections installed the exhibition over two weeks in August, which proved a challenging timescale. Raven Girl was suspended from her trapeze in the Carriage Entranceway; pages from the Wardrobe Department's 'costume bibles' were juxtaposed with Mortimer’s costume designs; reference images and costumes were mounted in the Foyer link cases; and City People and Chimeras were persuaded into small showcases in the Cloakroom Corridor.

Upstairs in the Amphitheatre Gallery, McGregor’s set of Niffenegger’s luminous aquatint etchings tell her story of Raven Girl, while opposite, production photographs of the ballet tell McGregor’s interpretation of Raven Girl. Find out more about their collaborative process.

Other photographs show the set being built and painted at the ROH Bob and Tamar Manoukian Production Workshop in Thurrock and McGregor in rehearsal with dancers of The Royal Ballet. Text panels describe the creative process and the work of the skilled artisans involved. The model box can also be seen in the Amphitheatre Bar, opposite the costumes worn by Sarah Lamb as Raven Girl and Eric Underwood as Raven Prince in their pas de deux at the end of the ballet.

A short film, including projections by Deepres as well as interview and rehearsal footage, is being completed for the Amphitheatre Gallery, and a leaflet to guide visitors around the exhibition will also be available in early October.

Exhibitions can be visited for free during normal daytime opening Monday-Friday, 10 am–3.30 pm. Before making a special visit, please call +44(0)20 7304 4000 to check that the front of house spaces are open.

See Wayne McGregor's Chroma in November

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