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Dance Books #2


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#16 wjglavis

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Posted 09 June 1999 - 09:10 AM

Just wanted to say I agreed with dirac. Karsavina's `Theatre Street' is, to my mind, one of the most fascinating ballet biographies ever written.
Similar books which I also love are Alexandra Danilova's book, `Choura', and Tamara Geva's `Split Seconds' (the latter is mainly about her attempts to be accepted as a student by the Theatre School, but is written with great passion - parts are very moving.) Both of these are good on the difficulties of everyday life after the revolution.
I also enjoyed Nijinska's `Early Memoirs', intersting for what she says about her brother, but VERY interesting on her own early life, with lots of detail about parts and costumes. And then there's Kschessinska's `Dancing in Petersburg' - though this is hard to find - which is surpringingly frank and engaging.
Karsavina is a good choice to read first, however. (After that I became hooked on Russian memoirs!)
-Wendy

#17 atm711

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Posted 09 June 1999 - 09:55 PM

I, too, loved reading Nijinska's Memoirs..it has the scope of a fine Russian novel. By reading all of her descriptions of her brother's dancing, and putting them all together in one long paragraph, you come away with a very good picture of how Nijinsky danced.

#18 dirac

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Posted 11 June 1999 - 01:14 AM

I enjoyed the books by Danilova and Nijinska also. Interesting that these are all by Russian dancers within a generation or so of each other. I think what gives these books much of their strength is the varied background of each author. Karsavina, Danilova, and Nijinska were all women who had seen a lot of the world, and that experience gives their accounts flavor and color.


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