The Mariinsky Ballet is the resident classical ballet company of the Mariinsky Theatre in Saint Petersburg, Russia. Founded in the 18th century and originally known as the Imperial Russian Ballet, the Mariinsky Ballet continues to be known by its former Soviet name the Kirov Ballet. The Mariinsky Ballet is the parent company of the Vaganova Ballet Academy, the Mariinsky Ballet was founded in the 1740s, following the formation of the first Russian dance school in 1738. The Imperial Theatre School as it was known, was established on 4 May 1738. It would become the predecessor of todays Vaganova Ballet Academy, the schools founder director was the French ballet master and teacher Jean-Baptiste Landé and the purpose of creating the school was to train young dancers to form the first Russian ballet company. The first group of students included twelve boys and twelve girls, following the Russian Revolution, the Soviet government decided that the ballet school and company were unwanted symbols of the tsarist regime and went on to close them both.
Following the assassination of the Bolshevik revolutionary Sergey Kirov in 1934, the Soviet Ballet was renamed the Kirov Ballet, a name which is still sometimes incorrectly used. Despite name changes and pressures of the Russian revolution, the present day Mariinsky Ballet is still linked to the school, the Mariinsky Ballet is today recognised as one of the worlds greatest ballet companies, employing over 200 dancers, including a reserve troupe and character artists. The Director of the Mariinsky Ballet is Yuri Fateyev, gergiev serves as Director of the opera company. The two companies operate as separate units, the basis of the Mariinsky Ballet consists of the following artists, For a number of years, Marius Petipa was the ballet master of the Imperial Russian Ballet. NY Times article by Lawrence van Gelder, March 25,2008 Kennedy Center, Information about Mariinsky Ballet accessed 4 October 2008
Pas de deux
In ballet, a pas de deux is a dance duet in which two dancers, typically a male and a female, perform ballet steps together. The pas de deux is characteristic of classical ballet and can be found in many ballets, including Sleeping Beauty, Swan Lake. It is most often performed by a male and a female though there are exceptions, such as in the film White Nights, in which a pas de deux is performed by Mikhail Baryshnikov and Gregory Hines. A grand pas de deux is a pas de deux that typically has five parts, consisting of an entrée. It is often considered to be the pièce de résistance and bravura highlight of a ballet and is performed by a leading pair of principal dancers. A grand pas de deux usually begins with an entrée, which serves as a prelude to. During the entrée, the dancers first appear on the stage and, typically with great pageantry, acknowledge each other, depending on the choreography, the ballerina and danseur may enter the stage simultaneously or at different times. The adagio or adage part of a pas de deux features graceful.
In the adagio, the ballerina performs elegant, often slow, the danseur, in turn, strives to maintain a display of poise and seemingly effortless strength while providing support for the ballerina. Because of this support the adagio is sometimes called supported adagio, examples Upon completion of the adagio, the dancers separate and each dancer, in turn, takes center stage and performs a variation. In general, the variations are intended to showcase spectacular, acrobatic leaps and turns, as well as the skills, the danseurs variation is usually performed first, followed by the ballerinas variation. Examples The coda is the segment of a grand pas de deux. Elements of the pas de deux first appeared in the early 18th century as opening acts of operas and ballets in which a couple would perform identical dance steps. At that time and throughout the Baroque period, ballet dancing was evolving to show more dramatic content. For example, in The Loves of Mars and Venus ballet of 1717, Mars strove to portray gallantry, ardent love and adoration, while Venus showed bashfulness, reciprocal love, and wishful looks.
In the late 18th and early 19th centuries a romantic pas de deux emerged that involved physical contact. As the 19th century progressed, the became a showcase for the skills of the increasingly sophisticated ballerina. The ballets of the late 19th Century—particularly of those of Marius Petipa—introduced the concept of the pas de deux
Le Corsaire is a ballet typically presented in three acts, with a libretto originally created by Jules-Henri Vernoy de Saint-Georges loosely based on the poem The Corsair by Lord Byron. Originally choreographed by Joseph Mazilier to the music of Adolphe Adam, all modern productions of Le Corsaire are derived from the revivals staged by the Ballet Master Marius Petipa for the Imperial Ballet of St. Petersburg throughout the mid to late 19th century. Le Corsaire was created primarily for the talents of the famous Italian ballerina Carolina Rosati, the role of Conrad—which contained no dancing in Maziliers original staging—was created by the Italian Domenico Segarelli. Although he was a dancer, it was Segarellis abilities as a mime artist that won him the many roles he created on the stage of the Opéra. It would not be many years that the role of Conrad included any dancing. Le Corsaire was first staged in Russia for the Imperial Ballet of St. Petersburg by Jules Perrot, for this production Petipa assisted Perrot in rehearsals, and even revised a few of the ballets key dances.
Over the course of his long career Petipa presented four revivals of Le Corsaire, each adding a substantial number of new pas, variations. His first revival was staged especially for his wife, the Prima Ballerina Maria Surovshchikova-Petipa, the production premiered on 5 February 1863, and included a score supplemented and revised by the composer Cesare Pugni. Four years Joseph Mazilier came out of retirement to mount a revival of Le Corsaire in honor of the 1867 Exposition Universelle, given that year in Paris. The celebrated German ballerina Adèle Grantzow performed the role of Medora, the revival premiered on 21 October 1867 and was given thirty-eight performances with Grantzow as the heroine Medora. After the ballerinas departure from Paris in 1868, Le Corsaire was removed from the Opéras repertory, in the winter of 1867, Granztow was invited to perform with the Imperial Ballet in St. Petersburg by Emperor Alexander II. For her début, Petipa staged a revival of Le Corsaire, for the production Petipa again called upon Cesare Pugni to compose music for new dances.
Petipas third revival of Le Corsaire was staged especially for the Russian Ballerina Eugeniia Sokolova, Petipas final and most important revival of Le Corsaire premiered on 25 January 1899, at the Imperial Mariinsky Theatre. This production was mounted especially for the performance of Pierina Legnani. The Prima ballerina Olga Preobrajenskaya performed the role of Gulnare, in 1888 Petipa supervised the creation of a new production of Le Corsaire for the company, which premiered to a resounding success. Petipa was a choreographer of the time in Russia. In 1894 the Bolshoi Theatres newly appointed Ballet Master Ivan Clustine mounted his staging of Le Corsaire, Petipa would allege that Clustines production apparently plagiarised much of his own choreography, particularly for the scene Le jardin animé. For this revival Gorsky supervised a substantially revised edition of Adams score that included a myriad of new dances, among the most notable scenes added by Gorsky was a dream sequence set to a Nocturne by Chopin, in which the character Medora dreams of her beloved Conrad
A principal dancer is a dancer at the highest rank within a professional dance company, particularly a ballet company. A principal may be male or female, the position is similar to that of soloist, principals are hired by a company to regularly perform not only solos, but pas de deux. It is a position in the company and the most prominent position a dancer can receive. The term is used mostly in ballet but can be used in forms as well. They are usually the star of the ballet, the term senior principal dancer is sometimes used as well. The terms prima ballerina or premier danseur have been used to similar levels of prominence in non Anglo-Saxon companies. In the Paris Opera Ballet, principal dancers receive the title of Danseur Étoile
Glossary of ballet
Because ballet became formalized in France, a significant part of ballet terminology is in the French language. A position of the leg to the side One of the directions of body, facing the audience, arms in second position, italian, or French adage, meaning slowly, at ease. Slow movements performed with fluidity and grace, the section of a grand pas, often referred to as grand adage, that features dance partnering. An attribute of movements, including those in which a dancer is airborne. The apparent elegance and precision exhibited by a confident, accomplished dancer, in dance, arabesque is a body position in which a dancer stands on one leg with the other leg turned out and extended behind the body, with both legs held straight. A jump that lands on two feet, when initiated from two feet, the working leg performs a battement glissé/dégagé, brushing out. The dancer launches into a jump, with the foot meeting the first foot before landing. A petit assemblé is when a dancer is standing on one foot with the other extended, the dancer does a small jump to meet the first foot. A position in which a dancer stands on one leg while the leg is raised at hip height.
The height of the knee versus the foot and the angle of the knee flexion will vary depending on the techniques, the working leg can be held behind, in front, or to the side of the body. The alignment of the thigh compared to the midline in Attitude derrière will vary depending on the techniques, the foot of the supporting leg may be flat on the floor, en demi-pointe, or en pointe. The standing leg can be straight or bend, Attitude was originally created to display the emotional zone of the leg, the knee to the ankle. A movement towards the front, as opposed to en arrière, for example, a step travelling en avant moves forwards towards the audience, as in sissonne en avant. A movement towards the back, as opposed to en avant, a rocking sequence of three steps — fondu, relevé, fondu — executed in three counts. Before the first count, one foot extends in a dégagé to second position or to the front or rear, the second foot in the sequence assembles behind the first to relevé in fifth or fourth position.
The foundational principles of movement and form used in ballet. The word is of Russian origin c,1930, with the suffix -mane coming from maniya. Showing lightness of movement in leaps and jumps, a dancer exhibiting ballon will appear to spring effortlessly, float in mid-air, and land softly like a balloon
Russian ballet is a form of ballet characteristic of or originating from Russia. Until 1689, ballet in Russia was nonexistent, the Tsarist control and isolationism in Russia allowed for little influence from the West. It wasnt until the rise of Peter the Great that Russian society opened up to the West, St. Petersburg was erected to embrace the West and compete against Moscow’s isolationism. Peter the Great created a new Russia which rivaled the society of the West with magnificent courts and his vision was to challenge the west. Classical ballet entered the realm of Russia not as entertainment, but as a “standard of physical comportment to be emulated and internalized-an idealized way of behaving. ”The aim was not to entertain the masses of Russians, but to create a cultivated and new Russian people. In 1738, he became master and head of the new ballet school, launching the advanced study of ballet in Russia. France provided many leaders such as Charles Didelot in St Petersburg, Jules Perrot, in the early 19th century, the theaters were opened up to anyone who could afford a ticket. A seating section called a rayok, or paradise gallery, consisted of wooden benches.
This allowed non-wealthy people access to the ballet, because tickets in this section were inexpensive, one author describes the Imperial ballet as “unlike that of any other country in the world…the most prestigious of the ballet troupes were those attached to the state-supported theatres. The directors of companies were personally appointed by the tsar. In the theatre, the men in the audience always remained standing until the tsar entered his box and, out of respect, after the performance they remained in their places until he had departed. Curtain calls were arranged according to a pattern, the ballerina bowed to the tsar’s box, to that of the theater director. By the early 1900s the Russian ballet went beyond its borders and it had become its own force and was distinctly Russian, while still being embraced by the Parisian society. In 1903 Ivan Clustine, a Russian dancer and choreographer who had started his career at the Bolshoi Theatre, was appointed Maître de ballet at the Paris Opera, the Parisians, while denying adoption of the backwards Russian troupe, had distinct Russian influence in their theater.
“Despite Clustine’s protestations, several features of the Opera’s post-1909 ballets, along with its conventions and balletic policy, appeared to betray a Russian influence. ”The stigma of Russian brutality. While their style was not only being accepted in Paris, but implemented in Paris theaters, the Ballets Russes were still considered dangerous, even in the theatre of performing art. “The Ballets Russes, at base, became a metaphor for invasion, a force that could engulf and control, could penetrate the membrane of French society and even art itself. ”The embracing of Russian ballet in the Paris society became a point of contention and French nationalism collided with Russian determination. ”Russia was incapable of simply bringing Russian culture to the West. In the beginning, the relationship between Russia and France through the arts was a testimony to their political allegiances
In ballet, battement is an alternating side-to-side movement of the working leg. Battements are typically performed in multiples, quickly and in rapid succession so that the foot appears to be fluttering or vibrating. They are usually executed in front, to the side or in back, the word battement is of French origin, meaning beat. Battement is employed in a variety of ballet movements, for example, battement développé is usually a slow battement in which the leg is first lifted to retiré position, fully extended passing through attitude position. Battement fondu is a battement from fondu position and extends until both legs are straight, upon completion, the working leg may be à terre or en lair. In the Russian school the foot is wrapped around the ankle, rather than flexed, in this case, the frappé comprises the working foot striking the ankle of the supporting leg. Battements frappés can be executed double, with beats alternating front, battement glissé, known as battement dégagé or battement jeté, is a rapid battement normally executed a few centimeters above the floor.
Battement lent is a slow battement, normally taken as high as possible, both legs remain straight for the whole duration of the movement. Battement tendu is a battement where the foot never leaves the floor. The working foot slides forward or sideways or backwards from the fifth or first position to reach the fourth or second position, lifting the heel off the floor and it forms the preparation for many other positions, such as the ronds de jambe and pirouette positions. Battement tendu jeté, known as battement dégagé or battement glissé, is executed a few centimeters above the floor with legs oriented at angles up to 45 degrees. Grand battement is a powerful battement action in which the dancer passes through dégagé and throws the working leg as high as possible, grand battement en cloche is a grand battement that alternates forwards and backwards, passing through the first position of the feet. Petit battement is a battement in which the angle changes while the upper leg. The working foot quickly alternates from the position in the front to the cou-de-pied position in the back
Edwin Denby (poet)
The son of Charles Denby, Jr. and Martha Dalzell Orr, Edwin was born in Tientsin, where Charles had been appointed as chief foreign advisor to Yuan Shi Kai a year earlier. Edwins grandfather, Charles Harvey Denby, who had served as the United States Ambassador to China for an unprecedented 13 years, died when Edwin was age one. Denby spent his childhood first in Shanghai, China, in Vienna, Austria and he was educated at the Hotchkiss School in Lakeville and attended Harvard University, in Cambridge, but failed to graduate. He attended classes at the University of Vienna, before obtaining a diploma in gymnastics at the Hellerau-Laxenburg school in Vienna in 1928 and he performed for several years, notably with the Darmstadt State Theater and celebrated triumphs alongside Claire Eckstein, a German ballerina and choreographer. Looking for someone to take his passport photo, he encountered photographer and filmmaker Rudy Burckhardt in Switzerland in 1934, and the two remained inseparable for the rest of Denbys life.
The following year, they returned to New York City, New York, the resulting play, titled Horse Eats Hat, was scored by Paul Bowles, and was performed as a Works Progress Administration Federal Theatre Production in 1936. During his lifetime, being ambivalent about the publication of his poetry, at the behest of Aaron Copland and Virgil Thomson, he began writing a dance column for the magazine Modern Music in 1936. In 1943, Thomson drafted Denby as the critic for the New York Herald Tribune. His dance reviews and essays were collected in Looking at the Dance, Buildings, Denbys works of poetry include In Public, In Private, Mediterranean Cities, Snoring in New York, Collected Poems and The Complete Poems. His English translation of Lao Tzes Chinese classic text Tao Te Ching from a German edition was published as Edwins Tao in 1993, Denbys only novel, Mrs. Ws Last Sandwich was published in 1972. In 1948, he was awarded a Guggenheim Fellowship grant in poetry, Denby was inducted into the National Museum of Dances Mr.
& Mrs. Cornelius Vanderbilt Whitney Hall of Fame in 2002. Edwin Denby at the Internet Broadway Database Jacket Magazines Edwin Denby feature Recordings of Edwin Denby reading his poetry on PennSound
Olga Iosifovna Preobrajenska born Preobrazhenskaya was a well-known Russian ballerina of the Russian Imperial Ballet and a noted ballet instructor. She was born in Saint Petersburg as Olga Preobrazhenskaya, olga—born frail and with a crooked spine—was an unlikely prima ballerina. But she had dreams of being a dancer, and for years her parents tried unsuccessfully to get her enrolled in dance school, the selection committee repeatedly rejected her as a candidate. But after three years of trying, her parents succeeded and the 8-year-old Olga entered the Imperial Ballet School in 1879, despite her physical shortcomings, Preobrazhenskaya grew strong with training under master instructors Marius Petipa, Lev Ivanov and Anna Johansson. She developed excellent turnout and toe point, though her hunched back remained troublesome and she was naturally expressive, bringing new life to a hackneyed repertoire, and exhibited the desired softness and grace of a dancer. In addition to her love of dance, Preobrazhenskaya had musicality to go with it, she studied singing, performed opera arias, and played the piano masterfully.
In 1892, she made her debut in Kalkabrino, the first of her performances in Petipa creations. She performed in Ivanov and Gerdts Sylvia and Sergei Legats The Fairy Doll, in 1895, she began to make international appearances, including in Paris and the United States. In 1900, she achieved the title of prima ballerina, one of her finest moments as a performer was dancing at Milans famed La Scala theatre. She received critical acclaim and audience adoration, no small feat for a Russian ballerina trained in the Italian school and she began to pay more attention to ballet instruction, in 1914, she began her teaching career in Saint Petersburg, where her pupils included Alexandra Danilova. For the next decades, she was one of the most prominent ballet teachers in Paris, instructing Irina Baronova, Tamara Toumanova. She finally retired in 1960, she died two years later, aged 91 and she was buried in the Russian Orthodox section of the Sainte-Geneviève-des-Bois Russian Cemetery. List of Russian ballet dancers Olga Preobrajenska at Find a Grave Footage of her teaching in 1959 on YouTube Photo tribute on YouTube
In ballet, a ballet blanc is a scene in which the ballerina and the female corps de ballet all wear white dresses or tutus. A precursor of the genre was Ballet of the Nuns, an episode in act 3 of Giacomo Meyerbeers opera Robert le Diable. The ghosts of cloistered nuns who, in life, were unfaithful to their vows are summoned from their graves to tempt the hero, with dancing, gambling and love making. Choreographed by Filippo Taglioni and first presented in Paris in November 1831, it starred his daughter, Marie Taglioni, as Helena, costumes in modern productions are usually white dresses with black sashes and headpieces. Dance historians consider this work, as the first fully-fledged ballet blanc, the name of the genre is derived from the white costume designed by Eugène Lami for Taglioni, which became the recognized dress for dancers of the academic school. The skirt of the Romantic tutu is either mid-calf or ankle length in design, despite the introduction of Romantic elements of otherworldly spirits, the dancing in La Sylphide was of the purely classical school.
Ghosts, shadows and other elemental beings dominated ballet stages for decades after La Sylphide. Famous ballets blancs were staged in act 2 of Giselle, in acts 2 and 4 of Swan Lake, in act 2 of La Bayadère, in 1908, Michel Fokine revived the genre in a ballet set to the music of Frédéric Chopin that he entitled Chopiniana. When a revised version was presented in Paris in 1909 by the Ballets Russes of Sergei Diaghilev and it has remained a popular staple of the ballet repertory for the past century and more