Ballets Russes - Dance

Dance

The Ballets Russes was noted for the high standard of its dancers, which contributed a great deal to its success in Paris, where dance technique had declined markedly since the 1830s. Most of the company's dancers were resident performers at the Russian Imperial Theatres in the early years. Diaghilev took them on loan to Paris during the theatres' long summer holidays.

Principal women dancers included many who earned international renown: Anna Pavlova, Tamara Karsavina, Olga Spessivtseva, Mathilde Kschessinska, Ida Rubinstein, Bronislava Nijinska, Lydia Lopokova, Diana Gould and Alicia Markova, among others.

The company was more remarkable for raising the status of the male dancer, who had been largely ignored by choreographers and ballet audiences since the early 19th century. Among the male dancers were Michel Fokine, Serge Lifar, Léonide Massine, Anton Dolin, George Balanchine, Valentin Zeglovsky, Theodore Kosloff, Adolph Bolm, and the legendary Vaslav Nijinsky, who was the most popular and talented dancer in the company's history.

The three most significant choreographers of the company were (in chronological order) Fokine, Nijinsky, and Massine.

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    Theodore Roethke (1908–1963)

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    Allen Ginsberg (b. 1926)