News & Runway

Here’s a First Look at the Balmain Ballet Costumes

The designer known for dressing an army of It girls in super-tight, super-constructed, super-embellished looks just gave British Vogue a sneak peek at his first-ever stage costumes for the Paris Opéra and — surprise, surprise — elaborate beading, crystals and threadwork reign supreme. “I wanted as much glamour as possible,” Balmain designer Olivier Rousteing told the glossy. “It’s what I love.”

In choreographer Sébastien Bertaud’s new ballet, Renaissance, 22 male and female dancers will sport skin-colored Balmain blazers teeming with pearls, beading and sequins, along with crystal-encrusted tights and leotards. The costumes harken back to Rousteing’s Fall 2012 collection — during his second runway season at Balmain, d’aww — and its ornate, Fabergé egg-inspired embroidery.

If you’re wondering how dancers leap through the air whilst weighed down by hundreds of pearls, the answer is: not easily. Rousteing, who’s used to dressing pop artists like Beyoncé and Rihanna for Earth-bound performances and wanted the costumes to be as opulent as his runway looks, was forced to forgo some of his usual flair. Still, Bertaud’s dancers will have their work cut out for them. “I want to preserve Olivier’s artistic intention, so I’m going to train all my dancers in order to make it possible,” the choreographer told British Vogue.

Rousteing joins a long list of designers who’ve designed for the ballet: Joseph Altuzarra and Riccardo Tisci for New York City Ballet, Rodarte’s Kate and Laura Mulleavy for Black Swan and Coco Chanel, Yves Saint Laurent, Christian Lacroix, Jean-Paul Gaultier and Pierre Balmain for the Paris Opéra.

Renaissance runs June 13 to 18. Scroll down for a preview of the intensely pretty costumes.

[ via Vogue UK ]