"...dressed in costumes by François-Noël Cherpin that cleverly suggest the 1920s while allowing full neoclassical ballet movement," - Who Cares? Susan Pond, Dance Europe, October, 2019
"Mata Hari is a timeless production and very strong in atmosphere. Everything from the costumes to the set designs to the music is
harmonious and the modern and the traditional come together in a tasteful way. The stage sets are minimalistic, often just an empty
spacious ballroom converted to different locations by adding a few classic pieces of Indonesian or Parisian furniture. The same goes for
the costume designs: Mata Hari’s dresses are made of classic white lace and red silk amongst others, but have a modern day cut…” - Bachtrak.com
“Mata Hari is an enterprise of epic proportions: a commisioned score from Tarik O’Regan (his first for a ballet), hundreds of stylish costumes by François-Noël Cherpin and a set designed by Clement and Sanôu that morphs from provincial Holland via Indonesia to the Paris of the belle époque and, finally, to war-torn battlefields. The scope is breathtaking…” - The Dancing Times, February, 2016
"The costumes designed by François-Noël Cherpin – from the strict black outfits of Magaretha Zelle’s aunts and uncles…, the light clothing in
the warm climate of the Dutch East Indies to the frivolous, intensely colorful costumes of Parisian night life – also accentuate the mood of
each scene…” - Theaterkrant, February 2016
“…This production (Paquita) is alive, with movement bringing freshness to every
detail, qualities complemented in François-Noël Cherpin’s filigree set designs reminiscent of Moorish Spain.” - Paquita - Dance Europe 12-2012
“On the plus side were attractive designs from François-Noël Cherpin, whose colorful tutus stood out against the white Alhambra-inspired
backdrop.” - Dancing Times, October, 2012
“…They are indeed magnificent costumes: the intensely colorful bodices on white tutus transforming the ballerinas into butterflies…”
Paquita - Het Parool 19 October, 2012
“In new designs from François-Noël Cherpin – with a look at the Alhambra and colorful, opulent tutus…” Paquita, De Volkskrant 22 October, 2012
"Paquita is exquisitely designed.” Trouw 22 October, 2012
“…Who Cares? gets flattering costumes from François-Noël Cherpin…” - NRC 19 March, 2004
“…The black and white chic, highlighted by Coppelia’s trademark cerise pink, is celebrated in François-Noël Cherpin’s costumes. There is an
explosion of 60s excess and style icons in the huge beehives of brassy blonde hair and the assistants in A-line tents and thigh high leggings,
with a touch of hippy rebellion sneaking in with ethnic scarves and bell-bottoms to counter the haute couture…” - Seeingdance.com
François-Noël is a costume designer based in Amsterdam whose imaginative costumes have receive critical acclaim both in the Netherlands and internationally. His distinctive style is rooted in the aesthetic of ballet, reflecting a great sense of refinement and sophistication. Freedom of movement, figure enhancement and a bold use of color are key elements in Cherpin’s creations. His visual vocabulary ranges from historical to contemporary, adapting to the director or choreographer’s vision and to the nature of each production.
Before working as a designer, François-Noël began his career as a professional dancer. Born in Roanne, France, he took his first ballet lessons at the age of seven. When he was 13, he went to Paris to study at the Conservatoire National and four years later moved to Brussels to complete his training at Mudra International – the school of Maurice Béjart. Subsequently he joined the Dutch National Ballet (Het Nationale Ballet). There, he performed and created roles in the classical, neo-classical and contemporary repertoires and worked with internationnally renowned choreographers.
On retiring from dancing, François-Noël studied fashion design at ArtEZ, the Arnhem Institute for the Arts (The Netherlands) and, back in Paris, at the École de la Chambre Syndicale de la Couture Parisienne. In 2002, he was awarded the first prize at the Paris Concours du Salon International de la Lingerie.
Whilst still a dancer, François-Noël created his first costumes for choreographer and Dutch National Ballet Artistic Director Ted Brandsen. To this day they maintain a long stating collaboration, with François-Noël designing the costumes for amongst others, Brandsen's Carmen, Pulcinella, Firebird, Coppelia and most recently the large-scale production of Mata Hari.
For Dutch National Ballet he has also created the costumes for new production of George Balanchine’s Who Cares? as well as Rachel Beaujean’s new version of Paquita for which he also created the set design.
Beyond François-Noël's extensive work for Dutch National Ballet, he has also designed costumes for numerous dance companies including West Australian Ballet, National Ballet of Portugal, Royal Ballet of Flanders, Semperoper Dresden and Théâtre National de Bordeaux.
In addition to his work for theatre, François-Noël has also presented several couture collections. From his atelier in Amsterdam he has worked as a couturier for an elite clientèle, specializing in bridal and evening wear. A versatile designer who enjoys creative collaborations he has worked on several projects across fashion and the performing arts such as Nochera, a high-end dance wear label inspired by the world of Tango and produced in Paris.
In 2019, François-Noël designed the costumes for Dutch National Ballet's production of Balanchine's Ballet Imperial which premiered in Amsterdam in September, and for the full-length production of Coppelia which was later released in cinemas around the globe. In 2021, he has designed the costumes for Dutch National Ballet Young Creative, Milena Sidorova's newest work, Rose, which was premiered online in May.