Photo: Brian Slater
White Lodge Museum & Ballet Resource Centre is the first dedicated ballet museum in the UK. It is housed within White Lodge – a Grade I listed building, and home to The Royal Ballet Lower School.
Visitors to White Lodge Museum can learn about the daily life of students at The Royal Ballet School, the history and development of Classical ballet and the fascinating story of White Lodge itself.
Previous exhibitions have included costumes worn by Margot Fonteyn and Rudolf Nureyev; an original watercolour of Anna Pavlova as ‘The Fairy Doll’ by Joseph Rous Paget-Fredericks; and the School reports of famous alumni, such as Darcey Bussell and Christopher Wheeldon.
Since 1955 White Lodge in London’s Richmond Park has been the home of The Royal Ballet School’s younger students. Commissioned as a hunting lodge by George I, it is a fine example of the neo-Classical English Palladian style of architecture.
For more than eighty years The Royal Ballet School has occupied a central role in the cultural life of the nation, producing some of the world’s most acclaimed dancers and choreographers. Its contribution to Classical ballet is acknowledged internationally.
Since it was founded in 2009, White Lodge Museum has made the building and its history accessible to the public. The Lodge was commissioned in 1727, the year following the debut of the ‘first ballerina’ Marie Camargo at the Paris Opéra. Its story continues to weave in and out of the fascinating history of Classical ballet.
The displays within the Museum feature material from the internationally significant Royal Ballet School Collections. Visitors can gain insight into the history of ballet, the history of the building and its inhabitants, and the story of The Royal Ballet School and Companies.