Hidden in the somewhat dusty and neglected Theatre & Performance exhibition space of the V&A is its latest show: Curtain Up celebrating the glitz and the glamour of London's West End and Broadway in New York.
Anyone who remembers the sea of blood-red poppies flowing out of the Tower of London last year will be excited to learn that Curtain Up becomes a slick, high-energy exhibition in the hands of the poppy artist, Tom Piper.
To celebrate the 40th anniversary of the Olivier Awards in April 2016, Piper (in collaboration with LFK Architects) has designed a space to hold the large collection of photographs, set designs, costumes and scripts from the biggest West End and Broadway productions.
Ensuring it is a 'singular sensation' and injecting razzmatazz to the boxed-up costumes on display, Piper includes audio-visual clips from the award-winning shows, miniature set designs, mirrors and ballet bars that turn the visitors into Chorus Line performers and Curious Incident of the Dog in the Nighttime inspired light displays.
Taking visitors from the stage to the design workshops and the history of the awards on the red carpet, the display consists of collections from the V&A and The Library for the Performing Arts, supplemented with key loads from private collections.
Highlights include the original costume designs from The Phantom of the Opera by Maria Bjornson, one of the longest running West End musicals and the longest running Broadway production of all time; Lion King costumes designed by Julie Taymor; costumes designed by William Ivey Long for Chicago and The Producers and Christopher Oram's costume designs for the Royal Shakespeare Company's Wolf Hall and Bring Up the Bodies.
It's well worth hunting through the V&A's more neglected corridors for this theatrical gold - before it heads off to be put on display in New York.
Suitable for ages 8-18
|Curtain Up: 40 Years of Theatre in London and New York, V&A
|V&A, South Kensington, Cromwell Road, London, SW7 2RL | MAP
|South Kensington (underground)
09 Feb 16 – 31 Aug 16, 10:00 AM – 5:45 PM
|Click here for more from V&A