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Kay, Barry


KAY, BARRY (1932–1985), stage designer. Kay was born in Melbourne, Australia, but studied in Switzerland and at the Académie Julien, Paris. He moved to London in 1956 and began designing for the Western Theater Ballet and the Aldeburgh and Edinburgh Festivals. His first complete production was for Shakespeare's Measure for Measure at the Old Vic Theatre in 1957. He designed productions for the Théatre de la Monnaie, Brussels, the Royal Shakespeare Company, England, the Royal Ballet Company, Covent Garden, the Staatsoper, Berlin, and the Stuttgart Ballet. His principal work was for ballet, notably in association with the choreographer Kenneth Macmillan for the ballets The Sleeping Beauty and Anastasia. Kay designed a number of ballets for Rudolph Nureyev including Raymonda and Don Quixote, which was also filmed with the Australian Ballet Company. His work is noted for brilliant decorative invention as well as remarkable psychological interpretation of the themes and subjects involved. He held a number of exhibitions of his stage designs in London, Berlin, Australia, and New York. Kay was noted for his pioneering use of three-dimensional sets in the 1960s. His work is in important museum collections, including the Victoria and Albert Museum, London, the National Gallery of Western Australia, and the National-Bibliothek, Vienna.

[Charles Samuel Spencer (2nd ed.)]

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