Stepping Out: Preparing for a Renaissance Ball

Stepping Out: Preparing for a Renaissance Ball

Renaissance Spring Friday Lates

Date and time

7:30 PM - 8:30 PM
28 March 2014
Sainsbury Wing Foyer

Siân Walters, Darren Royston and dancers and musicians of the Nonsuch History and Dance Company

Tickets

Admission free

Due to the nature of this event, numbers will be limited

Celebrate Renaissance Spring with us, and enjoy a special evening of entertainment when you step back in time and join the courtiers of Renaissance Italy. They are preparing for an evening's entertainment, part of a grand evening of music and dance. 

Programme

The event begins in the Sainsbury Wing Foyer at 7.30pm. A team of musicians, dancers and actors from the Nonsuch History and Dance Company and Royal Academy of Dramatic Arts (RADA) appear, dressed in 15th century historical costume. They are seen to be preparing for an evening's entertainment, part of a grand Renaissance wedding celebration. After a theatrical interlude, couples perform under the instruction of their dancing master, Darren Royston.

The Three Graces will appear on the staircase and perform a dance inspired by Botticelli's 'Primavera', linking to themes of Spring, Love and Marriage. Darren Royston and the courtiers then lead the audience 'in character' to the Sainsbury Wing Rooms, stopping first of all in front of Botticelli's 'Venus and Mars' and connecting mythological themes found both in paintings and dances of the period.

Siân Walters will provide historical background to a number of works of art which are linked - like Primavera - to themes of celebration, dancing and artistic patronage in the Medici household, and Darren Royston will instruct the dancers in the steps they would have learnt at the Medici court and enjoyed at wedding festivities.

The event ends with a promenade through the galleries, inviting the audience to join hands with the courtiers in a final follow-my-leader dance, inspired by Botticelli's 'Mystic Nativity'.

Darren Royston

Darren Royston is a Dance Historian, Director of the Nonsuch History and Dance Company and also Lecturer at the Royal Academy of Dramatic Art

Siân Walters

Siân Walters is an Art Historian and Lecturer at the National Gallery.

Nonsuch History and Dance Company

Nonsuch History and Dance Company was formed as a performance company in 1966 and acquired the status of Educational Charity in 1976, with the aim of reviving and presenting historical dances.

Image above: Detail from Master of the Story of Griselda, 'The Story of Griselda, Part II: Exile', about 1494

  • Share