THE GREAT EUROPEAN STAGE DIRECTORS Volume 3 (Ed.) Jonathan Pitches, (Methuen Drama, Bloomsbury Publishing, 2019):  “It was [Lesley Blanch’s] professional relationship with Komis, dependent on her skill as an artist and theatrical imagination that complemented some of the most important work Komis produced in his career. If he was the unnamed ‘Traveller’ in her most renowned artistic contribution, she was the unnamed designer in his.”

Lesley Blanch’s portfolio, discovered in January 2014, contains scenic and costume sketches for three of Komisarjevsky’s productions : Cimarosa’s Giannina et Bernardone performed at the Théâtre Pigalle in Paris in 1931; The Merchant of Venice performed at Stratford in 1932; and his production of Macbeth in 1933.

Additionally, two costume designs are for the Ballet Russe de Monte-Carlo’s Balanchine–Ravel ballet Daphnis et Chloé. On one, the name ‘Lydia Lopokova’ appears. Three sketches are for a Massine ballet with a terpsichorean theme titled Baroque. On one is written the name ‘Toumanova’, and on another is ‘Delaroria: dance with Shabelevsky’. There are also two designs for Massine’s ballet Rouge et Noir – the sketch for ‘The King’ was included in the MOMA 1934 Exhibition.

  • Costume design Orchidée Le Club des Deux Canards Mandarins Henry Duvernoy & Pascal Forthuny | Unsigned | Dir Komisarjevsky Nov 1923 | Le Studio Champs Elysées Theatre Paris | Beinecke Library, Yale USA © Estate of Lesley Blanch