Florine’s flight : a reimagining of The Bluebird fairytale
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For my master’s thesis project, I am combining my passions for dance and costumes with my love of tradition and innovation to collaboratively create a short dance film, Florine’s Flight, that showcases my interpretation of Princess Florine’s journey though The Blue Bird fairy tale. Working together with a dancer/choreographer, a musician/composer, and myself as the artistic director/costumer, we gathered source material pertinent to our respective disciplines to inspire this inventive work. The Blue Bird, written by Madame d'Aulnoy in 1697, serves as the driver of the narrative of our film. The protagonist, Princess Florine, is featured in the ballet The Sleeping Beauty, when she appears with the Blue Bird himself to dance for Princess Aurora’s royal wedding in Act II. The costume Princess Florine wears in this pas de deux, the original choreography by Marius Petipa, and the original score by Pyotr Ilyich Tchaikovsky inspired myself, the choreographer, and the composer in our respective processes. As a costume technologist and crafts artisan, my primary contribution to the production of this short film are the three distinct costume pieces the dancer wears throughout the piece. Each costume is inspired by traditional ballet tutus in different ways. Be it the structure of layered net, the style lines of an elegant bodice, or the iconic silhouette of a flat tutu skirt, I seek to reinterpret the tradition of ballet costumes in new and challenging ways. I endeavored to work with fabrics and materials differently than I ever had before, and to expand my knowledge of costume crafts through new fabrication techniques. Each costume emphasizes a narrative aspect of the moment it is worn in the film, and the dancer and music both interact with the costume pieces to great effect, heightening the overall experience of the viewer. It is my goal to have viewers enjoy the dance film because they should see the historical source materials that influenced our team’s creative choices. The film will be screened as a part of a gallery exhibit that provides additional context to its historical influences, the design process, and specifically the method of creating the costume pieces.
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