Toni Maticevski’s Illuminated Costumes


21 October 2015

Award-winning fashion designer Toni Maticevski speaks about his designs for our upcoming Illuminated season in Melbourne:

The creation of the costumes for Les Illuminations and Variation 10 as part of Illuminated  is a story that extends over three years, since 2013.  Beginning with my original commission, to design for the double bill, Les Illuminations, which premiered at Sydney Opera House that spring.

Each of these two works had a cast of only four dancers, and the choreography was intimate, created for an up close and personal experience on a catwalk stage in Opera House Studio.

Benjamin Britten’s music for this show was so beautiful, romantic and sensual, I knew that I didn’t want to make these costumes too modern. The two sets of costumes reflect the two very different musical themes.

For Les illuminations the costumes and attitude are dark, sexy and suggestive. These pieces are in black and mesh. 

There’s a natural shift in colour and the overall composition for the pieces I have created for Rafael’s Variation 10. For this piece, which features the whole Sydney Dance Company ensemble, I really wanted to bring a movement and volume to the dancers.

The colours were kept to cool shades of grey and silver, in varying hues and textures. Meshes and sheer ruffles, frayed edges and outlined cut outs. 

There was a real focus on zones on the body. A lot of the male dancers bodies are enhanced and with slung lines that manoeuvre around their chests, crotches, arms and backs. The female dancers are given a softer more romantic almost distressed ballerina treatment, with tiered volumes cascading and warming the silhouettes.

Rafael is so particular with how he likes his dancers to look and present. I took it as a bit of a challenge for this final piece to add volumes and layers to the dancer’s costumes. Things that felt bound and almost entwined like some of the movements that Rafael and the dancers create together. 

– Toni Maticevski

Take a sneak peek at Toni Maticevski’s designs for Variation 10 as part of Illuminated at our image gallery.

25 Oct
State Theatre, Arts Centre Melbourne

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