Der Rosenkavalier’s ‘tastiest’ prop
“When the prop comes off-stage after the scene, it’s all gone.” Besides paint and polystyrene, there are eggs, flour and sugar in the wedding cake from the second act of Der Rosenkavalier for the cast to enjoy.
Ruben Lakeman, who has been with the Props Department for 34 years, explains: “The prop was created by my colleague Jolanda for the production in 2015. She made a six-layer polystyrene cake and decorated it in soft colours, using polystyrene roses and bows. But at the top, she left a generous opening, which I fill with actual cake.”
The cake-making happens before every performance: “I buy a sponge cake from the supermarket and cut it to size, so that it fits perfectly in the opening. I spread jam between the layers and cover the cake in marzipan that has the same colour as the polystyrene. Besides being the right fit, the cake should also look appetising, of course.”
“During the performance, the actual cake is cut and served to three choir members. It’s up to them to make sure they finish their cake before they start singing again. I’ve heard that singing with your mouth full is a no-no....”
Text: Lune Visser
Richard Strauss’ Der Rosenkavalier is performed from 13 April until 2 May 2023