Curtain Call

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Issue 13 goes  behind the scenes of performance - meeting set and costume designers, choreographers, creative directors - we talk composition and approach with composers and songwriters  to exploring the more private or singular acts from firegazing to polar expeditions

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Issue 13: Performance

In a first for the magazine, legendary set designer and artist Tony Hornecker has built his own physical interpretation of a ‘hole-and-corner’ (‘a secret place: somewhere you go to escape the world; to be inspired, to contemplate and create’) for our cover. 

Hornecker isn’t the only one making good use of things that he finds in the performing arts this issue: for creative director Michael Howells it means gilding lilies, oyster shells and anything else you can find to recreate Queen Victoria’s palaces. For über-choreographer Ryan Heffington it means fashioning the world’s most-watched YouTube videos out of your avant-garde roots.

It also means discovering theatre wherever you may find it – be that the local farm or a Tiffany’s shop window; from the grandeur of the Hermès Saut equestrian event to a faded cinema in India: anywhere the magic happens.

Elsewhere, we go backstage with the costume designers at Glyndebourne opera house; defy conventions with composer Hannah Kendall and ballet dancer turned ceramicist Stephanie Buttle; go back to basics with songwriter Luke Sital-Singh and deconstruct the rules of pop with legendary band The Art of Noise.

Of course, putting on a performance can also mean making an almighty hash of things, as Richard Benson points out in his moving essay The Audience.

But ultimately, this issue is about discovering more of ourselves – whether by walking in Scott of the Antarctic’s footsteps or staring into the flames of an open fire, telling stories. 

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