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Important Women in Ballet


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#1 BryMar1995

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Posted 15 May 2001 - 08:32 PM

I don't know if this has been done on this board before, but I thought it might be interesting to list as many influential women we could think of who have had a profound impact on ballet in the 20th century. It might be fun to start with Artistic Directors, then move on to mentors, teachers, choreographers, department chairs, dancers, ballet masters, organizers, writers, critics, etc..

Starting with directors, my contributions are Dame Ninette De Valois of the Royal Ballet, Lucia Chase of American Ballet Theater, Barbara Weisberger of Pennsylvania Ballet, Katherine Littlefield of Littlefield Ballet, Patricia Wilde of Pittsburgh Ballet Theater, Mary Day of Washington Ballet, Francia Russel (who co-directs with her husband Kent Stowell ) of Pacific Northwest, Anna Pavlova, who toured the US and Europe extensively after the Ballets Russes, Marie Rambert, there must be more.

Some choreographers that come to mind are Bronislava Nijinska, Agnes De Mille, and Twyla Tharp.

Barbara Crocket and Lila Zali and the others who founded the RDA movement come to mind as well.

Please offer your contributions and let's see how many women are impacting our art form today.

#2 Alexandra

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Posted 15 May 2001 - 09:00 PM

We actually have done this before, but quite awhile ago, and it never hurts to revisit an issue. Thanks for your list. There are so many great female personalities in modern dance, especially in its early days, that ballet's women often get forgotten.

#3 salzberg

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Posted 16 May 2001 - 03:45 AM

Jean Rosenthal, one of the pioneers of dance lighting.

#4 Mme. Hermine

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Posted 16 May 2001 - 06:00 AM

E. Virginia Williams, founder of the Boston Ballet.

#5 Mel Johnson

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Posted 16 May 2001 - 07:35 AM

Dorothy Alexander, founder of the Atlanta Ballet, and Audrey Estee, founder of the Princeton Civic Ballet, which has today become the American Repertory Ballet. Maria Tallchief, who proved once and for all that REAL Americans can too dance this here ballet stuff.

#6 BryMar1995

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Posted 16 May 2001 - 08:25 AM

I remember Danilova, Doubrovska, and Toumkovski as being inspirational coaches and teachers, not to mention Diana Adams when she headed SAB.
Rick

#7 Mel Johnson

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Posted 16 May 2001 - 09:46 AM

And don't forget Muriel Stuart, whose book The Classic Ballet was and is a work which shaped the modern standard of classic technique. This besides Miss Stuart's long and fruitful teaching career.

#8 Mel Johnson

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Posted 16 May 2001 - 09:49 AM

And having mentioned Miss Stuart, how dare I short Agrippina Vaganova, who reshaped the whole face of the Russian school of classic ballet?

#9 Leigh Witchel

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Posted 16 May 2001 - 10:28 AM

Bronislava Nijinska!

#10 cargill

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Posted 16 May 2001 - 12:26 PM

And of course Marie Rambert, who was so amazing at recognizing and developing talent.

#11 liebs

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Posted 16 May 2001 - 05:42 PM

How about Betty Cage? She was so instrumental in the success of the early years of NYCB. And Barbara Horgan.

#12 BryMar1995

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Posted 16 May 2001 - 07:05 PM

Vicky Simons has set the Balanchine Rep everywhere. Learned a lot from that lady.
Rick :)

#13 CygneDanois

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Posted 16 May 2001 - 07:55 PM

Catherine de Medici, who brought ballet from Italy to France. Marie Taglioni, for popularising pointe work. Pierina Legnani. Catherine the Great.

#14 Mme. Hermine

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Posted 18 May 2001 - 08:00 AM

Ruth Page!

#15 salzberg

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Posted 18 May 2001 - 09:07 AM

I agree with Ruth Page, who besides being a major influence was a very nice person.

I'd also have to add Mary Day, who was also a major influence.


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