The curious costumes of KURIOS - Cabinet of Curiosities

August 17, 2016

A fitting tribute to the power of the human imagination, the costumes of KURIOS – Cabinet of Curiosities are the result of a visual exploration of the beginnings of science, of the discoveries and inventions that led to the industrial revolution of the 19th Century – from the steam locomotive to electrical power to electromagnetic waves.


Here are some fun facts about these majestic attires:

To make the Accordion Man’s attire, the costume-maker spent an entire week sewing inside the costume!

The rola-bola specialist wears a gold-lined, translucent aqua-colored overcoat. The fabric is reminiscent of the first plastics such as Bakelite and Rhodoid.

During the Russian cradle duo act, the costumes worn by the two “mechanical dancers” evoke a pair of wax dolls. The cut is inspired by early sportswear and vintage circus costumes. The materials, however, are quite modern and highly sophisticated (velour effects and imitation leather cuts in gold).

The costumes in the acro-net act are an allusion to the way film director Georges Méliès imagined Martians; hence the scales as well as the fin and fishtail grafts.

Philippe Guillotel: Costume Designer

Philippe has worked for many high profile French movie and theatre directors. Since 1985, he has had a long working relationship with the renowned French choreographer Philippe Decouflé for whom he designed the astonishing costumes seen in the opening and closing ceremonies of the 1992 Winter Olympics in Albertville, France. He also worked with Decouflé on the opening ceremonies of the 50th Cannes film festival in 1997 andTricodex, a multimedia work for the Ballet de l'Opéra de Lyon, in 2003. Between 2001 and 2005, his designs were featured in four ballets, including La Belle, staged by the Ballets de Monte Carlo. In cinema, Philippe designed the exuberant costumes for the 2002 feature film Astérix & Obélix: Mission Cleopatra, for which he received a César award, and prior to that, the films Doggy Bag and À la Mode.


In 2007 he designed the costumes for choreographer Jean-Christophe Maillot’s production of Gounod’s Faust in Wiesbaden. He has been equally active in the world of live shows, designing the costumes for the musical Starmania in 1995 for Canadian composer and director Lewis Furey, and videos for a number of artists such as Julien Clerc and Alain Souchon. With KURIOS – Cabinet of curiosities, Philippe Guillotel collaborates with Cirque du Soleil for the third time afterThe Beatles LOVE and IRIS.