Moulin Rouge is bringing its costumes to NYC for a fashion show. — Photo courtesy of Moulin Rouge/S.Franzese
The classic Parisian cancan show is packing up its bags and hitting the Big Apple for the first time ever in its 126 years of existence, with some very special luggage in tow–over 3,000 pounds of handmade haute couture costumes.
Designed and created at Moulin Rouge's onsite ateliers in Paris, the Swarovski crystal-encrusted outfits heading to New York City cost a cool $350,000, just a fraction of the Paris production's current costume budget of $4 million, and will be put on prime display in Times Square during the BEST OF FRANCE celebration, with fashion shows taking place Saturday, September 26 at 2:20 p.m. and Sunday, September 27 at 2:40 p.m.
"The Moulin Rouge shows are famous for the richness and elegance of their costumes," says Janet Pharoh, Moulin Rouge artistic director and ballet mistress. " I think people will be amazed by the design and the quality of our garments. The show will highlight handmade frocks with bright colors, Swarovski crystals, and opulent feathers, and just like the 'cherry on the cake,' the costumes will be worn by [our] beautiful dancers."
The hand-made costumes cost over $350,000. — Photo courtesy of Moulin Rouge/Sandie Bertrand
While the ladies make the rounds at NYC's famous landmarks, like the Statue of Liberty and Empire State Building, they'll also be showing off their iconic ensembles and world-famous moves in "a Taste of Moulin Rouge," a condensed eight-minute show taking place on the main stage in Times Square on Saturday at 12:30 and 4:05 p.m. and Sunday at 11:20 a.m. and 4:30 p.m. Narrowing the number of dancers from 60 to 17, the free show will "showcase the parts of the performance that best capture the essence of the Moulin Rouge," Pharoh says.
The only difference is that dancers never go topless outside of the Moulin Rouge walls in Paris. "We don't generally alter our show for a specific audience–the Moulin Rouge remains the Moulin Rouge in every country we visit," she explains. While the show is short, it still features one of the most iconic parts of Parisian performance–the French cancan–that has been going on since the opening in 1889.
"It is nice to bring a bit of French culture to people who don't have the chance to travel to Paris," Pharoh says. "It is our hope for those who can travel, that this 'Taste of Moulin Rouge' will bring them to visit the Moulin Rouge in Paris and enjoy the whole experience."
The French cancan is one of the highlights of the Times Square show. — Photo courtesy of Moulin Rouge