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Duchess of Cambridge to visit historic Royal Opera House

Kate will visit the costume department to learn more about textiles and the commissioning of fabrics.

The Duchess of Cambridge will learn about stage costumes during a visit to the Royal Opera House. 

Kate will visit the pattern room as well as the dye shop where staff will showcase techniques such as hand-painting and digital printing, which are used to reproduce fabrics no longer available.

She will also meet costumiers who turn out up to 600 costumes per production.

The visit is expected to be of great personal interest to Kate whose great-great-grandfather, Francis Martineau Lupton, was a mill owner who ran the family’s successful textile manufacturing business – William Lupton & Company – with his three brothers.

Up to 10,000 costumes are used each year by artists from The Royal Ballet and The Royal Opera House, and the department has built up a historic costume collection of more than 5,000 items, including some dating back to 1861.

As part of the visit, the duchess will watch Royal Ballet principal dancers Lauren Cuthbertson, Laura Morera and Vadim Muntagirov rehearse the romantic ballet The Two Pigeons.

Kate will meet the dancers to discuss how factors such as lighting, interaction and movement all influence the designs of their costumes.

The visit will allow the duchess to learn more about the supply chain and commissioning of fabrics.

Press Association

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