Fashion is theatre said Anna Wintour at this year’s British Theatre Awards, but nowhere is that truer than at the Victoria’s Secret fashion show.
Victoria's Secret angels land in London
Taylor Swift performing on the catwalk in London's Earl's Court.
Watching 47 of the world’s most genetically blessed women parade up and down a runway in Angel Gabriel-style feathered wings, while Taylor Swift, Ed Sheeran and Ariana Grande perform, you cannot help but feel, well, uplifted. It is one of the most expensive fashion shows of the style calendar, seen in 185 countries by 500 million people, and coming to London is yet more proof of our standing as fashion's most influential capital. “The show is completely unique," says Ed Razek, chief marketing officer for Victoria's Secret. "If you took all of the fashion shows around the world and added up the audience for all of them, it doesn't reach one small percentage of the people we will reach with this show.”
And there were smiles flickering on even the industry’s most composed lips last night as 21-year-old pop superstar Ariana Grande, surrounded by dancers and angels in Sophia Webster thigh-high boots, brought the house down performing the hit Bang Bang. Taylor Swift, looking like an angel herself in matching robes and underwear, performed two songs while high-fiving and dancing with the models as they walked along the 100 foot glittering runway. While Ed Sheeran looked like there was nowhere he would rather be, as he sang alongside angels Alessandra Ambrosio and Adriana Lima who strutted out in $2million fantasy bras strung with 16,000 diamonds, sapphires and rubies.
The loudest cheer of the night was for Dutch model and actress Doutzen Kroes, who had given birth just five months earlier, and of course British supermodel Jourdan Dunn who played to the local crowd.
Before the performance, Razek stepped onto the catwalk to explain that this was unlike any other fashion show, the audience (3,000 guests over the two performances) were here to have a good time, clap and cheer.
Aside from a show in Cannes in 2000, this is the first time the lingerie empire has shown outside of the US. It's quite a coup, although the brand does already have British connections. It is reportedly named after Queen Victoria, it's stores are designed to resembled Victorian boudoirs, and this year's show was certainly a spectacle worthy of royalty.
By Claire Brayford