It’s 1640 and you’re invited to a spectacular court festival at the palace, known as a masque. These extravagant celebrations combined poetry, music, dance, theatre and painting, and were performed for the King and invited courtiers, ambassadors and European royals. Held in the great halls at the Palace, temporary theatres and elaborate stages were set up to host a spectacular evening of entertainment.
The astounding special effects of masques were akin to moving baroque paintings. They displayed the King’s Godly power and triumph over unruly subjects, rebels and the forces of nature, reinforcing the belief in the “divine right of kings”. At this special RA Late, you are invited to explore Whitehall Palace re-imagined. Become 17th-century royalty for the night and experience masques, banqueting feasts, revelling rooms with wild courtly dancing and discover the King’s hidden private apartments. Tickets from £40.