Virtual Museum

Virtual Museum

Santo Loquasto

Born 1944 in Wilkes-Barre, Pennsylvania

Santo Loquasto’s set and costume designs have become integral to the contemporary face of The National Ballet of Canada. Since designing his first production for the National Ballet in 1987, he has designed more than a dozen productions for the company. He has frequently collaborated with James Kudelka, together developing productions for the National Ballet as well as for Les Grands Ballets Canadiens, the Joffrey Ballet and the San Francisco Ballet. Among Loquasto’s works regularly featured in the National Ballet’s repertoire are The Nutcracker, Swan Lake and Onegin.

Loquasto’s productivity as a designer is in no way limited to The National Ballet of Canada. Since the 1970s Loquasto has designed sets and costumes for theatre, film and ballet at an intense and prolific pace. He has worked with filmmaker Woody Allen to design over twenty of his films and has received Academy Award nominations for his design of Bullets Over Broadway, Radio Days and Zelig. Other cinematic highlights include his work for major feature films such as Big and Desperately Seeking Susan. Additionally, Loquasto has designed dozens of productions for the stage and ballet, including several for notable playwrights David Mamet and Neil Simon and collaborations with choreographers Jerome Robbins, Mikhail Baryshnikov, Kenneth MacMillan and Twyla Tharp.

Loquasto draws inspiration from diverse sources to create striking and memorable sets and costumes. For example, to create the aura of Belle Époque Paris for An Italian Straw Hat, Loquasto examined late 19th century cartoons, illustrations, posters and photographs. For The Firebird, traces of Mayan ruins emerge in the intricate structures. And for the new production of the holiday classic The Nutcracker in 1995, James Kudelka and Loquasto revised the traditional setting of the ballet from a German parlor to a country barn in czarist Russia. Loquasto’s innovative perspective provides a refreshingly modern aesthetic for today’s audiences.

View the exhibit

Associated Productions

Concerto (1987)

Pastorale (1990)

The Actress (1994)

Spring Awakening (1994)

Gluck Pas de Deux (1994)

Company B (1995)

The Nutcracker (1995)

Theme and Variations (1998)

Swan Lake (1999)

The Firebird (2000)

The End (2003)

An Italian Straw Hat (2005)

A Suite of Dances (2010)

Onegin (2010)

Other Dances (2011)

Top image credit: The National Ballet of Canada tutus on display. Photo by Setareh Sarmadi.