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FREE Exhibition Performing Art's Centre
Hot on the high heels of the Hollywood Costume Display at ACMI, which wowed Melbourne, comes a free exhibition celebrating gorgeous stage costumes from the Arts Centre Melbourne's Performing Arts Collection. It runs this year from November 16th through to 23rd of February in 2014.
Three show queens' costumes will be central to the display; including those of Dame Edna Everage, Kylie Minogue and Dame Nellie Melba.
Costume from Hello Dolly! Gordon Frost Organisation, 1995, Arts Centre Melbourne, Performing Arts Collection.
To let you in on a sample there's Dame Edna Everage's iconic gladioli dress designed by costume designer Bill Goodwin. For Dame Edna's entrance, the dress was worn under a 6-foot diameter, gladioli-covered crinoline, attached to a cherry picker. Dame Edna was lowered to the stage and emerged from the crinoline wearing this figure-hugging gown.
Dame Edna Everage Photograph by John TimbersArts Centre Melbourne, Performing Arts Collection
There is Kylie Minogues Swarovski crystal clad costume designed by John Galliano, for her Kylie Showgirl: Homecoming Tour in 2006. This costume, which Kylie donated to the Collection in 2008, was the one she wore to make her triumphant return to the stage. It was her most glamorous interpretation of a showgirl to date. It took six months to complete and features a head dress like a Roman Centurion's helmet.
Then there is Melba's handpainted and heavily beaded cloak known as the 'cloak of angels" designed by Jean-Phillipe Worth. She was the diva of her day and she knew hot to dress.
There are also magnificent costumes on display, many donated by The Australian Ballet, Sydney Dance Company, Melbourne Theatre Company, Bell Shakespeare and Opera Australia. You can see three extraordinary gowns created especially for Dame Joan Sutherland.
There are also costumes from hit musicals of the 1950s and 1960s including Hello Dolly and my My Fair Lady.
As well as all these amazing clothes there is some stunning costume jewellery, and behind the scenes footage of how these creations were designed and made.
The Performing Arts Collection is Australia's largest and most important collection of performing arts history and traditions.
They previously ran a Kylie Minogue exhibition which attracted 460,000 visitors in Australia and then a further 519,000 visitors at the Victoria and Albert Museum in London making it one of the most popular decorative arts exhibition in the world.
It's great to get another taste of Kylie's show-stopping costumes but also to see this homage to some of our stars who have conquered the world stage.
Melba's cloak image from the Performing Arts Museum
For an interesting video of the way in which Kylie Minogue donates her costumes to the Performing Arts Museum click here.
Where:Arts Centre Melbourne, Gallery I -Arts Centre Melbourne is a couple of minutes walk from Flinders Street Station or take any tram (except tram no.1) along St Kilda Road and disembark at Arts Centre Melbourne. Stop number 14.