Lucire


  latest news   fashion   beauty   living   volante   in print   tablet   tv
  home   community   shopping   advertise   contact

Royal New Zealand Ballet promises an ‘epic’ production with Romeo and Juliet, opening August 16


NEWS  by Lucire staff/July 6, 2017/21.15



Ross Brown

The most anticipated ballet of the year in New Zealand, the Royal New Zealand Ballet’s production of Romeo and Juliet, set to the music of Sergei Prokofiev and choreographed by the company’s outgoing artistic director, Francesco Ventriglia, has its world première on August 16 in Wellington. The sets and costumes have been designed by three-time Academy Award-winning designer James Acheson (who won for Dangerous Liaisons, The Last Emperor, and Restoration).
   Other talents behind the full-length, three-act ballet are dramaturge Mario Mattia Giorgetti, choreographic assistant Gillian Whittingham, and guest ballet master Frédéric Jahn. The New Zealand Symphony Orchestra’s associate conductor Hamish McKeith will conduct orchestras in Wellington, Christchurch, Auckland and Dunedin.
   The company’s biggest production of the year, there will be 13 scene changes and over 90 costumes.
   It is Ventriglia’s second full-length ballet for the RNZB, with work beginning in October 2016. His successor, Patricia Barker, has started as the new artistic director as the reins are handed over, noting, ‘It’s a very exciting time to have joined the RNZB—this production promises to be exquisite while it transports us to the heart of Verona. The energy in the studio is captivating. I have enjoyed getting to know the RNZB dancers and I’m looking forward to seeing them inhabit these iconic characters.’
   Ventriglia said, ‘To create a brand new classical ballet of one of the greatest stories and the most beautiful scores is so invigorating. I’m taking great care to respect Shakespeare and Prokofiev’s great works plus drawing inspiration from Franco Zeffirelli’s 1968 multi-Academy Award-winning film. I’m also working with a dream team of collaborators and the very talented artists of the RNZB, who I’d like to thank for their incredible work.
   ‘James Acheson’s magnificent sets make me feel right at home, like I’m in Verona in the height of an Italian summer. All of the costumes are exquisite. We have been very true to the Renaissance period and I know audiences will also be transported to the time and place where our star-crossed lovers meet.’
   The production promises to be ‘epic’, with 22 performances scheduled from August 16 to September 24 in Wellington (with Orchestra Wellington), Christchurch (with the Christchurch Symphony Orchestra), Auckland (with the Auckland Philharmonia Orchestra), Rotorua, Dunedin (with the Dunedin Symphony Orchestra), Invercargill, Palmerston North, and Napier.
   The season is sponsored by Ryman Healthcare. More information can be found at www.rnzb.org.nz.

News in brief: Redken appoints Mana Dave artistic director; PangeaBed’s mattress focuses on ‘sleep fitness’


NEWS  by Lola Cristall/May 31, 2017/0.30

Mana Dave of Auckland, New Zealand salons Blaze and Pony Professional, is now Redken’s artistic director for New Zealand.
   Dave’s role will see him direct the growth of Redken’s New Zealand team, shape the salon creative programme, and offer creative direction for New Zealand Fashion Week shows and seasonal fashion trends.
   He already facilitates classes at Redken Fifth Avenue in New York, and has worked alongside colourist Tracy Cunningham and Redken artistic education director Sam Villa.
   ‘Within New Zealand I have the vision for our team to be seen by the industry as the lead team for high-impact education and fashion-forward hair trends,’ he said. ‘Our artistic team is working with some of New Zealand’s premier fashion partners like Stolen Girlfriends’ Club, Zambesi, Knüfermann and Huffer on a variety of projects and ultimately I want to see more of them on the international stage showcasing their amazing work.’

PangeaBed is all about quality, creativity and luxury. Bobby Shamsian, president, and co-founder Martin Regueiro, seek to provide customers with stable and highly well constructed pieces intended to deliver both restful nights and elegance to a room. The copper-infused 100 per cent pure Talalay Latex offers a comfortable sleep, directly adapting to the body. Each layered material aims to target a certain element, increasing a peaceful state of mind while decreasing considerable strain and tension brought about from stress. The Latex creates a cooling effect with an antibacterial factor; the cool gel dramatically decreases heat, reducing the tossing and turning throughout the night, the quilted cover is luxuriously lavish for a cozy and snug sleep. The overall concept intends to create a night of ease, relaxation and absolute tranquillity.
   Presented in an elongated box, the mattress easily unravels and inflates to the proper size. The brand stands by its motto, ‘The world at rest.’—Lola Cristall, Paris Editor





Three by Ekman: the Royal New Zealand Ballet shows its witty, ingenious side


NEWS  by Jack Yan/May 20, 2017/12.01



Stephen A’Court

Swedish-born choreographer–director Alexander Ekman, it transpires, was the first person Francesco Ventriglia called when he was first appointed artistic director of the Royal New Zealand Ballet. Ekman, says Ventriglia, creates choreography that is ‘different, brave, intelligent, witty and fun,’ and he sees the work as being the equivalent of ‘good food’ for the dancers. The three ballets in Three by Ekman are certainly that: modern and relevant, yet somehow also timeless in their appeal. Tuplet, Episode 31 and Cacti keep audiences gripped, while taking us on a journey into unexplored territories.
   They aren’t fully unexplored, mind: regular RNZB attendees will remember Cacti from last year’s trio of ballets in Speed of Light, but seeing it again this time was a renewed pleasure, and connecting it to two more Ekman ballets gives it an extra dimension. As the third ballet, Cacti was a fitting conclusion: when you’re in Ekman’s world, you almost want to stay in it in an attempt to understand the creativity that drives this talented and important modern choreographer. It’s a world that’s energizing, spontaneous, but cheekily self-aware.
   The first foray into that world is Tuplet, a clever 18-minute introduction where the dancers’ own breaths, voices, and the sounds of their bodies become the rhythm. Composer (and a fellow Swedish-born international talent) Mikael Karlsson’s music has a dose of Bart Howard’s ‘Fly Me to the Moon’ as performed by Victor Feldman helped set the mood. Video projections, which were also designed by Ekman, feature slowed-down black-and-white clips of jazz musicians, highlighting the improvised nature of the dance, performed by six dancers standing on white square mats. New Yorker and Parsons alum Nancy Haeyung Bae designed the costumes, which aided the movement well, and Amith Chandrashaker the lighting, which balanced the the dancers with the video screens above. The conclusion was clever and a taste of Ekman’s humour: he showed silent films of audiences applauding as the live one at the St James Theatre did the same while the curtain fell.
   A video introduction to Episode 31 followed, showing the RNZB’s dancers learning the ballet. It’s a tradition of Episode 31, where a short film is made in the city in which it is performed. The film shows that the dancers were not restricted to the studio, as they ventured out from the Theatre in flash-mob style to various Wellington landmarks such as the cable car and the Botanic Garden; Mayor Justin Lester is caught walking by as the company vigorously dances Episode 31 on the waterfront. (The video is below, though we recommend you don’t spoil the experience.) The dance is a celebration of youth, energy and pace, fitting given its origins as a piece created for Julliard (and first performed in 2011; the video there made use of New York City landmarks such as the Subway). Karlsson once again composed the music, with costumes by Julliard’s Luke Simcock, and lighting by Nicole Pearce. Simcock’s visually deconstructed black and white costumes happily mix genders (e.g. skirts and collared dresses with prints of jackets), as does the make-up on the dancers (mustachioed faces on pale white). The pacy performance itself is contrasted with one dancer who moved in slow motion across the front of the stage; the curtain rose and fell to show vignettes of the action going on behind, leaving you wondering: are we really seeing vignettes or are the dancers repositioning themselves intentionally in preparation for the next reveal? The lighting rig came down, flooring was lifted up and moved, and a second slow-motion dancer wandered with a sign reading ‘Beautiful’ in a stark, all-cap Helvetica (the design of this sign itself is an exercise in irony). As with other Ekman ballets, spoken words accompany the action, with poetry (and this is the programme’s list) by Christina Rossetti, William Allingham, Eleanor Farjeon, Robert Louis Stevenson, William Hughes Mearns and Edward Lear.
   A second video came after the interval, where Ekman is seen on a ferry to Somes Island in Wellington, contemplating choreography and its connection to its surroundings. Will I affect the island or will the island affect me? You can’t but help find Ekman’s quirky personality endearing and you form a connection with the choreographer—and understand that there is a method here, from a man who constantly looks for ways to push ballet forward.
   There’s less chaos in Cacti than in Episode 31. Here, spoken word also features, in an unsubtle dig at postmodernism and the pretentious reviews modern dance might get (one only hopes this article is not an example), with a recording written and voiced by Spenser Theberge. The New Zealand String Quartet accompanies the action here, with both composed and improvised music, at least for the first part of Cacti, before classical music (Haydn, Schubert, and Beethoven) takes over. The 16 dancers move their white tiles, shouting and clapping as they added to the rhythm, before bringing in cactus plants on-stage. Ekman himself designed the set and costumes; Tom Visser also worked on the set and designed the lighting. The second part, a duet between characters Aram and Riley, is another humorous Ekman take, where the audience can hear the streams of consciousness from the pair (played by Alexandre Ferreira and Laura Saxon Jones today). As noted in our review last year, Cacti breaks down the pretence and complexity of ballet into basic statements: the two characters are disengaged from any story and just want to get the dance done. The stuffed cat that is thrown on stage still surprises on a second viewing, and we note that it was a different colour this time.
   When Cacti was part of Speed of Light, we only got a dose of Ekman’s style. This time, we were immersed, and Three by Ekman feels more satisfying and complete. It’s one of the RNZB’s most enjoyable modern ballets, and it’s consistent throughout, not just in the expertise of the dancers, but in the tone and ingenuity of the three works.—Jack Yan, Publisher

Three by Ekman tours till June 15. For venue and booking information, visit www.rnzb.org.nz.

Why nixing sugar in your system is not a diet


NEWS  by Lucire staff/May 8, 2017/10.58


Above: Summer Rayne Oakes’s SugarDetoxMe: 100+ Recipes to Curb Cravings and Take Back Your Health, the result of a “sugar cleanse” she went on from 2014. To get people off sugar, Summer Rayne’s even created a programme to help others do the same. Below left: Summer Rayne Oakes.

I never thought I could nix my sweet tooth. I just figured it’s something that you’re born with. To a large extent, that’s actually true. Not only are humans programmed to prefer sweet over bitter, (which is no doubt an evolutionary advantage, as many bitter tastes are actually poisonous), but by the time we’re born and as we’re growing, our taste is already fairly developed.
   The latter part is courtesy of a number of factors, including what our mother chose to eat while we were in utero, whether we were breast-fed or formula fed, and even now—what evidence suggests—what our Dads and even grandparents ate. The last point I made is not one to gloss over. If the evidence, which has presented itself today, is correct, then the food choices we put into our bodies today—will affect several unborn generations after us. In sum, we’re making direct health decisions for people who are yet to be born!
   With all of our “advances” in medical care, we must ask ourselves why is life expectancy dropping for the first time since 1993? When I was born in the mid-’80s, type 2 diabetes—a disease that is inextricably linked to our excessive sugar intake—was known as ‘adult-onset diabetes’. Now in just three decades, it’s common among children, affects 1 in 11 adults worldwide, 37 per cent of whom live in the western Pacific region; and one in seven births is impacted by gestational diabetes. In New Zealand alone, nearly 286,000 people were diagnosed with diabetes in 2015—a doubling over the last decade. If the rate continues at this pace, diabetes is projected to cost Kiwis more than $1,000 million in annual health care costs in five years’ time.
   The statistics seem startling enough, but perhaps not as startling as something closer to home, like the amount of free sugars—or sugars not bound by fibre—that we’re consuming on a daily basis. The upper limit of free sugars for the day—and I emphasize the word upper—is 6 teaspoons for a woman, 9 for a man. However, New Zealanders, in particular, are consuming around 27 teaspoons per day per person, according to the Sugar Research Advisory Service. That’s well over three to four times the upper limit for the day!
   About three years ago now, I began working in the world of “good” food. We were experimenting with an idea as to whether we could get farm-fresh food into people’s fridges more efficiently. When working so closely with farmers and food makers, you inevitably home in on what you’re eating—and how it makes you feel. I always considered myself a healthy eater in general. My parents have always been health-conscious and we largely grew our own food. Unlike my parents, however, I struggled with a sugar tooth; one that has left me with many memories of hoarding sweet things. I finally had the time to ask, ‘Why?’ and to begin to probe how this one ingredient has seemingly snuck its way into three out of four products on our supermarket shelves.
   This curiosity and the need to know how to overcome my seemingly innate sugar habit led me on a Nancy Drew-like investigation; I began researching all I could about our relationship to the sweet stuff, and started documenting my “sugar cleanse” via sugardetox.me, which later led to an easy-to-follow, empowering programme to help others do the same and most recently, a cookbook and guide on the very topic.
   Free sugars have become so prevalent in our food that the average person might not even realize that he or she is tipping the sugar scale even before heading out the door in the morning. This particular ingredient has a way of changing our brain chemistry, too—acting as a hyper-stimulus to trigger our brains and bodies to release dopamine, serotonin, and other neurotransmitters. In sum, it keeps us hooked and trapped in a vicious cycle of ups and downs throughout the day.
   It’s part of the reason why reducing or eliminating free sugars from your diet is not a diet. It’s simply removing a potentially deleterious substance from one’s body—much in the same way an alcoholic needs to remove alcohol from his or her system. This may, at first, seem a little counter-intuitive, but the ingredient is heavily taxing our bodies to the point that some scientists are now calling it a ‘chronic [versus acute] liver toxin’. Over time, it affects our body’s own natural abilities to detoxify themselves. This in turn can cause inflammation, energy slumps, skin problems, obesity, and disease. Though some medical practitioners would be hard pressed to call excessive sugar intake an “addiction”, more signs point to the fact that it is—from brain-imaging scans to the rise of sugar-addiction clinics.
   As those of us who have begun to eradicate free sugars from their diets know, you begin to taste real ingredients again. Our taste buds have plasticity, renewing themselves, and adjusting taste preferences to the food we feed our bodies and our cells. A freshly picked summer tomato is sumptuously sweet; but to those of us who are used to overdosing on a hyper-stimulating cola, the best sun-ripened tomato from the farm might seem fairly bland.
   Our appreciation for real food is within our reach—if we give our taste buds time to acclimate from that which is hyper-stimulating. It’s not impossible to curb your sweet tooth, as I have found out. We are, after all, masters of our own destiny. Some of us have to contend with more challenging, uphill battles—but when we have the curiosity and will to understand our body’s needs and wants, then we’re already primed towards a path to better health. I encourage and invite everyone to take the time to explore their own personal cravings and relationship to food, as none of us have the same story or experience. I assure you that when you’re able to put your own puzzle pieces together to see the whole picture, you begin to feel empowered to discover the path towards health that is right for you!—Summer Rayne Oakes, Editor-at-large

Usain Bolt, Chanel Iman, Nina Agdal celebrate Kentucky Derby at G. H. Mumm event in NYC


NEWS  by Lucire staff/May 7, 2017/1.19




Andrew Toth/Getty Images

Storied champagne house G. H. Mumm has again shown off its new, award-winning bottle design for Mumm Grand Cordon, with Olympian Usain Bolt doing the honours in New York during the Kentucky Derby. Other VIPs attending the event were models Chanel Iman and Nina Agdal, and actor–comedian Mario Cantone.
   The new bottle has been designed by Welshman Ross Lovegrove, with the iconic red sash indented into the glass, with no front label. The design has already won gold at the Grand Prix Stratégies du Design.
   Bolt is Mumm’s “CEO”, or Chief Entertainment Officer, a newly coined title as a celebrity spokesman for the brand, and led the celebrations at the launch.
   The party atmosphere even saw Mumm cellar master Didier Mariotti engage in a battle on the turntables with Bolt, when the pair took over from DJ Chelsea Leyland.
   Mumm Grand Cordon celebrates its 140th anniversary this year. Mumm is the Derby’s official champagne partner.


















Andrew Toth/Getty Images

Naturally organic, inside and out


NEWS  by Lola Cristall/May 6, 2017/22.41


Josh Madson

There is nothing like the feel and smell of natural, organic products. Tiffany Andersen’s Salts Alive Bath and Body collection is all about being organic, vegan, toxin-free and it’s an absolutely fresh sensation. Mineral cell salts, alœ vera juice and other healthy ingredients come to life in their range of shampoos, conditioners, body lotion, face and body polish as well as hand soap.

   Trilogy is a skin care line celebrated for its range of natural and highly rich products. Its new Rosapene Radiance Serum helps to repair the user’s skin, working deep within the pores. Sea algæ, alœ vera and rosapene work together to protect the skin from harmful attributes. Trilogy’s new Rosehip Oil Light Blend strikes a balance to regulate the skin’s oil production while targeting wrinkles and fine lines. The oil penetrates into the skin, leaving it feeling silky, clean and healthy.
   All Good started in 1997 with the simple All Good Goop healing balm that aimed to relieve skin ailments including blisters, scars, cuts, scrapes and more, made exclusively for founder Caroline Duell, as well as her family and friends. Eventually the brand launched All Good Goop to the public, along with a number of other products including lip balms, sunscreens, body lotions and deodorants predominantly based on simple, organic and natural ingredients. Each product has a luxurious, creamy texture and a velvety consistency.



   Gaia Herbs have taken the herbal market by storm with an array of natural and organic products. The MacaBoost, with cacao and ginger or vanilla chai flavours, features energy-boosting supplements that can blend into a daily smoothie for the extra stamina needed to recharge for the day. Another effective powder blend is their Turmeric Boost, where a dose of curcumin aims to support key organs. Gaia Herbs’ Supreme Cleanse is a two-week-long programme that aims to cleanse and relieve the body from waste and toxins. The brand’s thorough Liver Cleanse also incorporates a number of active components such as dandelion, artichoke, black radish and milk thistle to detoxify internally.

The American eco-lifestyle magazine Organic Spa Magazine organizes a biannual event from Los Angeles to New York, bringing media and a number of highly anticipated brands together under one roof. The Conrad Hotel in Lower Manhattan welcomed guests at an event where they can get up close and personal with product representatives as well as brand founders.
   Aura Cacia returned with their pure essential oils and powerful chakra-balancing oils. The chosen scents are designed to awaken all the senses to alleviate the mind and soothe the soul. Frankincense, meroli, myrrh, patchouli and rose produce particularly powerful and robust aromas. KPS Essentials, a luxury skin care line, includes ingredients such as argan, coconut, jojoba seed, rosehip oils, green tea and honey, reviving and restoring skin. SpaRitual, launched by Shel Pink in 2004, embraces an eco-friendly concept. Its new limited-edition Passionfruit Agave body collection include a sugar scrub, exfoliating cleansing oil, nourishing oil for body and hair, as well as a body soufflé. For a gorgeous manicure, SpaRitual also presented its innovative long-lasting nourishing vegan nail polish shade that works to fortify one’s nails while making them grow longer. The blend includes red tea and seaweed extract.
   A number of other brands to discover included Boiron USA, Columbia Skin Care, Cancun Tourism, NeoCell, Riviera Maya, Shire City Herbals’ Fire Cider, MyChelle, Nubian Heritage, Deer Lake Lodge, Rejuva Minerals, and more. While some introduced hair and skin care products, others presented hot-spot zen-like destinations.—Lola Cristall, Paris Editor











Alex Lucas

H&M creates unique looks at Met Gala for Nicki Minaj, Stella Maxwell, Ashley Graham, Jourdan Dunn


NEWS  by Lucire staff/May 2, 2017/23.27




Dimitrios Kambouris, Neilson Barnard, Dia Dipasupil, John Shearer

Hennes & Mauritz (H&M) went all out by dressing seven celebrities at the Metropolitan Museum of Art’s Costume Institute Benefit—the Met Gala—this year. Nicki Minaj, Future, Ashley Graham, Joe Jonas, Jourdan Dunn, Sasha Lane and Stella Maxwell all donned unique H&M looks to celebrate the Institute’s exhibition, Rei Kawakubo/Comme des Garçons: Art of the In-Between.
   H&M has had some experience of Kawakubo’s design æsthetic when the retailer teamed up with Comme des Garçons for a designer collection in 2008.
   It’s the third year which the company has attended the Benefit, though the first in which it has made such a substantial push through the media.
   The looks included ‘deconstruction, subverted tradition and asymmetry, mixed with the charm of bows, flowers and polka dots,’ said the company.
   ‘It has been our honour at H&M to create these looks inspired by Rei Kawakubo–Comme des Garçons, one of fashion’s most important and influential designers. Each H&M look has been entirely custom-made, with both Kawakubo’s creative world and the style of our guests in mind,’ said H&M design head Pernilla Wohlfahrt.
   Minaj wore a tulle gown with a silk taffeta train, with black vinyl roses at the hem and beneath the train, held by a silk duchesse kimono top, and an Obi belt featuring Kawabuko’s face. ‘Partnering with H&M has been an incredible and unique experience. The look we have created is so special to me and I’m looking forward to sharing this moment with everyone. Together with the H&M design team, we embodied the theme; from the dramatic train to Kawakubo’s face. it’s truly inspiring!’ she said.
   Future wore a slim-fit tailcoat made from organic silk, Tencel and wool, with an embroidered black skull and red Swarovski crystal heart on the back.
   Graham wore an off-white deconstructed corset dress with a red silk shirt, both decorated with dark red silk organza ruffles. ‘It’s been such a wonderful experience with H&M for my first Met Gala. I have loved collaborating with them every step of the way and I can’t wait to show off my dress. It’s everything I could have ever dreamed of!’ she said.
   Dunn wore a deconstructed dress featuring an off-white silk taffeta top and an asymmetrically cut, deconstructed skirt made from navy pinstripe suiting. Lane’s design was a sheer structured dress embellished with polka dots, held by a sheer, boned upper body with black Swarovski crystals.
   Jonas wore a deep red slim-fit suit in Italian double-silk satin with black stripes and lapels, over a black organic silk shirt. ‘I always love wearing H&M, so it’s been an amazing experience to have H&M create this one-off look just for me. The tailoring is sharp and perfect for this special night, and it’s all so effortless,’ he said.
   Maxwell wore a sheer organic silk chiffon dress covered in pearls. The pearls began as a necklace, crossed the chest, and formed the lines of a crinoline into the dress.










Dimitrios Kambouris, Neilson Barnard, Dia Dipasupil, John Shearer


H&M creates unique designs for 2017 Met Gala by Lucire

National Audobon Society hosts 2017 gala: US$1·1 million raised for wildlife and nature


NEWS  by Lola Cristall/April 14, 2017/3.03




Camilla Cerea/National Audobon Society

This year’s National Audubon Society gala took place at the Gotham Hall in New York City in an absolutely elegant setting. Statues of birds and other details contributed to a stunning atmosphere. Loyal members and a number of other attendees, including Audubon board chair Margaret Walker and the organization’s president and CEO David Yarnold, gathered throughout the evening to celebrate the society’s hard work while promoting their important mission. Guests congratulated Frances Beinecke as the proud recipient of the Audubon Medal as well as Nathaniel P. Reed, who received the Lufkin Prize for Environmental Leadership.
   A non-profit organization, the National Audubon Society, is applauded for its extensive work preserving and helping promote the conservation of birds as well as other wildlife and ecosystems nationwide. Appropriately named after John James Audubon, a Franco-American artist, ornithologist and naturalist of the nineteenth century, the organization is strongly committed to the preservation of birds and the natural environment. Audubon groups were formed in the US more than a century ago, predominantly in the state of Massachusetts, eventually expanding nationally over a short period of time.
   With almost 300 guests proudly celebrating the evening, more than US$1·1 million was raised, dedicated to the Society’s conservation endeavours as well as their climate change programme.—Lola Cristall, Paris Editor








Camilla Cerea/National Audobon Society

Next Page »

 

Get more from Lucire

Our latest issue

Lucire 37
Check out our lavish print issue of Lucire in hard copy or for Ipad or Android.
Or download the latest issue of Lucire as a PDF from Scopalto

Lucire on Twitter

Lucire on Instagram