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Balanchine "Stories of the Ballet" ??s


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#1 sneds

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Posted 10 November 2001 - 09:06 AM

Hi!
In getting my birthday/Christmas wish list together, I have noticed that there are several versions of the book (approximate title) written/edited by Balanchine "Complete Stories of the Ballet". I've seen two editions of the out-of-print book and also the "101 Stories of the Ballet". The out of print book is available via second hand dealers, and I was wondering which version/edition people think is the best, and suggest I should get/wish for redface.gif )

Thanks!
Kate

#2 Richard Jones

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Posted 10 November 2001 - 04:04 PM

I have just picked up (in a second-hand bookshop) Balanchine's Festival of Ballet; two volumes containing scene-by-scene stories of 404 classical and contemporary ballets. It has various copyright dates, so I guess it must have grown: the latest is 1977. It is by Balanchine and Francis Mason, and also contains a selection of GB's essays, including "How to enjoy ballet" (nearly 9 pages). I don't know where it fits into the world of ballet books, but it's a good read. I'm soon to see a programme including Apollo and Who Cares?, and didn't realise there are connections between the two till I read GB's comments. The book has 7 pages on Who Cares?!

#3 Perfect Performer

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Posted 10 November 2001 - 09:27 PM

The one that I liked the best was "Balanchines New Complete Stories of the Great Ballets."

#4 Jack Reed

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Posted 17 November 2001 - 10:09 PM

I'd think the best edition of this kind of book would be the one with the greatest number of ballets described in it. I think that's the 1977 edition, called "Balanchine's Complete Stories of the Great Ballets." According to its Preface, the first edition (1954) had 131 and the second (1968), called "Balanchine's New Complete Stories of the Great Ballets," 241; "Now," it says, "minus some 40 from the latter, there are 404." So you might want the second edition, too, to have those 40.

("101 Stories of the Great Ballets," mentioned facing the title page of the third edition, is obviously out of the running from this standpoint.)

Evidently the third edition was published in 1977 in Britain under a different title; and in 1983, the year of Balanchine's death, a two-volume version was published in Britain (by Comet Press), but I don't know the number of ballets included. I always assumed it was the 1977 edition, but who knows?

#5 Richard Jones

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Posted 18 November 2001 - 05:36 AM

"I'd think the best edition of this kind of book would be the one with the greatest number of ballets described in it. I think that's the 1977 edition, called "Balanchine's Complete Stories of the Great Ballets."

Evidently the third edition was published in 1977 in Britain under a different title........ I always assumed it was the 1977 edition, but who knows?"

Yes, looking through the preface of my copy of the book I've already mentioned on this thread, I see it is the same work.

For reference, my copy of "Balanchine's Festival of Ballet" (as it is called here) gives the latest copyright in the USA as 1977 (pub. Doubleday), then first pub. in GB in 1978 by W H Allen, finally pub. in paperback in 1984 by Comet (paperback division of W H Allen). Great book!


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