Costumes behaving badly in Discovering the Art Posted August 12, 2011 I hadn't actually considered contemporary ballet,but I take the point about modern costumes, and will pay more attention to this aspect of costuming, as I have recently made an effort to introduce contemporary ballet into my collection.I'm grateful for the pointer. It is however in classical ballet where the real problems are. It's such a crying shame when a superb performance is marred by the distraction of a skirt which refuses to rise and fall as it should. I've just gone off to compare three of the Giselles I have (RB,POB & La Scala among others) and I just can't get past the annoying behaviour of the Royal Ballet's Act II skirts,much as I love the overall performance.Maybe the fabrics are too lightweight, could that be it? The POB do seem to fare better in the costume department. My wife, who is not a huge fan of ballet, commented on the lovely rise and fall of the skirts in the POB La Dame aux camelias. I thereafter became acutely aware of the special talent which some costumiers have and others definitely not. It took me long enough to get past my objection to skirts of any type, especially for major solos, but I can live with it if they don't unnecessarily interfere with what's going on within them. While I often despair at the lack of anything at all to look as in those tedious mass character dances,it is in the sublime moments of such jewels as Giselle Act II when this aspect of ballet is at its most critical, in my view. I appreciate that it is only my view, but I do think it rather sad that a great performance, especially when preserved on disc, is diminished by less than sublime costuming. I won't veer off into tutus, which can be similarly damaging to a performance (in my view) - maybe others might care to have a go at that?