My birthday outing was to Kensington Palace to experience the Wild Work's Enchanted Palace production. There's a melancholy smell to the Palace rooms, even before the story of the sad princesses is related.
The intention is to send little creepy chills down our spines. If the dim lighting, a crown floating above a dress and a Vivienne Westwood gown running down stairs doesn't do it, then the whispers and chatter coming from hidden speakers may help.
The exhibition is beautifully executed and I was mesmerised by Stephen Jones' headresses floating from the ceiling. And yes, I was enchanted by the ethereal room sets but I vowed never to go there after dark.
Enchanted Palace is an anti-dote to all the sickly sweet, marshmallow, princess paraphernalia favoured by toy manufactures.
Children like Fairy Tales, and they are often dark and pretty scary. I think they'll love the exhibition and will be way less affected than I was. I just felt so sad for the princesses. Another reminder that money and priviledge ain't all it's cracked up to be. Was that the intention in this "time of economic crisis"?
Enchanted Palace is expected to run until February 2011. Photography isn't allowed, but there's a good photo story of the exhibit's creation on Wild Work's website.