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Re-Imagining Cirque’s Crystal Costumes
Known for its larger than life productions and world-famous acrobatics, Swarovski has partnered with Cirque du Soleil on a number of Swarovski crystal costumes for the performers’ infamous spectacles. Pursuing the same goal of acting responsibly (and innovatively) as a business, Cirque du Soleil and Swarovski partnered once again to give Fashion Business students at École supérieure de mode (ESM) the opportunity to reimagine Swarovski crystal-embellished costumes that have graced the Cirque stage worldwide. The challenge connected two student teams from ESM (KALÉI and BA VIP) with these incredible materials to engage their skills in a sustainable fashion challenge.
We were excited to collaborate with Swarovski in order to support young local fashion talents in a unique and creative way,” noted Benoit Mathieu, Vice-president of Costumes and Creative Spaces at Cirque du Soleil. ‘‘This initiative enables us to combine creativity and development sustainability, two values which are dear to our core values. We were impressed to see the talent discovered with this project.’’
Working in teams, students at ESM were commissioned to transform past Cirque du Soleil costumes into new designs using crystals and fabric, inspired by engaging with key sustainability issues including the reuse of materials in a creative way. In addition to the hands-on challenge, Cirque du Soleil and Swarovski also actively assisted the students with sustainability and product lectures.
Marie-Ève Faust, Professor at l’École supérieure de mode (ESM) de l’ESG UQAM mentioned: “It’s an honor for us to collaborate with internationally renowned businesses such as Cirque du Soleil & Swarovski. Not only students are learning beyond usual product development academic themes but they were able to reason and conceptualize products according to twenty first century features.”
Winners of the KALÉI team transformed Swarovski crystal-embellished costumes from Cirque du Soleil to create a kaleidoscope with crystals inside it, evoking memories of early childhood paired with a cloth bag made of costume scraps for carrying the kaleidoscope. Winners of the BAR VIP team created a coaster with crystals on one side and, on the other, recipes for a variety of cocktails that could be matched with the characters from Cirque du Soleil shows.
Nadja Swarovski, Member of the Swarovski Executive Board, commented: “It was a pleasure to collaborate with Cirque du Soleil to support these young fashion talents and to find new ways to explore sustainability issues within their educational and creative development.”
With its longstanding history of engagement with performing arts and theater, Swarovski honors culture and the creative expression behind the world’s top performances and performance artists. The partnership with Cirque du Soleil and ESM represents Swarovski’s ongoing commitment to sustainability through education and creativity.