2408 - The Legacies of the Ballets Russes Sergei Diaghilev: The First Lord of the Dance
In the tangled narrative of twentieth-century art, there is no more colorful or influential figure than Sergei Pavlovich Diaghilev. The son of a bankrupt Russian vodka distiller, Diaghilev would reinvent himself as the greatest impresario of all time, conquering Europe first and then the world with the Ballets Russes. This was more than just a ballet company; it was a creative movement that, from its inception, drew to itself the greatest musical, theatrical, and artistic talents of the day. The adventure began in 1909 when Diaghilev arrived in Paris with a troupe of dancers recruited on their summer break from the Imperial Ballet of St Petersburg, taking up residence at the city's Chatelet Theatre. The dances they performed were all new, created by the young dancer Mikhail Fokine, and set among ravishing designs by Leon Bakst. But it was the performances of Anna Pavlovna, Vaslav Nijinsky, and Tamara Karsavina that captivated the audience and the four-week season was a vast success. Lecture (plus Questions) Viewing Videos
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