Posted 08 May 2001 - 10:17 PM
Posted 09 May 2001 - 05:02 AM
I remember Beriosova very well from her days as Principal with the Royal Ballet. She was an aristocrat among ballerinas, tall, beautiful and elegant. I saw her in many things, but especially remember her partnership with the very handsome Donald MacLeary. They were perfect together. MacLeary is still around and still very handsome! Beriosova died fairly recently.
She did all the classics, but I was particularly impressed by her Lady Elgar in Ashton's Enigma Variations, and her amazing Persephone (also Ashton), where she not only danced but also spoke the Andre Gide text in perfect French. Not many dancers today could do that!
I also just about remember her father, Nicholas Beriosov, who was ballet master with the London Festival Ballet when I was a child, and I think danced the occasional character part like Dr. Coppelius. How I wish I'd kept all my programmes so that I would be quite certain who I'd seen in what.
[ 05-09-2001: Message edited by: Helena ]
Posted 09 May 2001 - 08:22 AM
Posted 10 May 2001 - 03:03 PM
Posted 11 May 2001 - 11:29 PM
I think her "signature" role was Odette. If she was 'on' she could be a wonderful Odile as well. She was also a beautiful, sweet and elegant Aurora. Surprisingly, she also danced Clara in the Nureyev 'Nutcracker' - very charmingly. Beriosova opened the Royal Ballet season at the Met in Cinderella in 1969. It was a performance made famous by the fact that the coach, which Cinderella gets into upstage center and which then circles the stage to downstage center before the curtain closes, tipped over with her inside.
Those performances of Cinderella at Covent Garden in the early circa 1973 marked her short-lived return to dancing full-length ballets after about a two-year hiatus due to health problems. I was there - working as an usherette. I had to take two nights off in order to see the complete performances, and I arranged for the fans to use the sinks in the usherette changing room to keep the daffodils fresh.
After those performances, she only was cast in one other full-length (besides the Tsarina role in 'Anastasia') - in Giselle, and then she only completed Act I, as she sustained a foot injury. Lynn Seymour performed Act II - unrehearsed - with Donald Macleary. Macleary, by the way, was one of the world's greatest partners. Seymour said that he was the only one with whom she would have dared perform Giselle Act II unrehearsed.
Beriosova retired to young. The last stage role she performed, I think, was Lady Capulet (and I think she only did it once). She died about a year ago of cancer.
Somewhere I have two pairs of Beriosova's shoes. I have loads of autographs.
Posted 14 May 2001 - 05:50 AM
Link to interview:
The two books about her are a biograohy by A. H. Franks and a shorter piece, mainly photographs, by Cyril Swinson. The only other commercially available video featuring her that I know is The Soldier's Tale - and there are a few glimpses of her as the Lilac Fairy in the composite Sleeping Beauty film, and a film of her in Cranko's Lady and the Fool - both probably to be seen at the NYPL.
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