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Diaghilev Ballet Russe Centenary Celebration 2009

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Celebrations in St. Petersburg, Russia

Programme of the international festival "Diaghilev P.S."

Saint Petersburg 12-19 October 2009

12 October, Mnd

Alexandrinsky Theatre

Opening of the Festival. John Neumeier´s Gala Tribute to Diaghilev

Hamburg Ballet Company

Vaslaw – Nijinsky – Le Sacre.

13 October, Tue

Great Philharmonic Hall

Opera Gala Tribute to Diaghilev

Conductor Alexander Titov.

State Academic Symphony Orchestra of St Petersburg.

14 October, Wed

State Russian Museum

Opening of the Exhibition Diaghilev. The Beginning.

15 October, Thu

State Hermitage

Opening of the Exhibition Dance. Homage to Diaghilev.

16 October, Fri

State Hermitage

Russian Ballet Academy Performance at the Hermitage theatre.

17 October, Sat

State Museum of Ethnography

Opening of the Exhibition Silver Age in Gold

Gala Dinner and Ball Jewels in Ballet.

18 October, Sun

The Sheremetev Palace "Imperial Collection"

Concert of young soloists playing unique musical instruments

19 October, Mon

Alexandrinsky Theatre

Closing of the Festival

Ballet Gala featuring International Stars including performance by the Bolshoi theatre of Russia

Further information at

http://www.theatremuseum.ru/eng/diagilev/programm.html

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Paris has finally released the schedual for their Ballets Russes festivities. For the ballet perfmances:

The Three-Cornered Hat'

Le spectre de la rose

L'Apres-midi d'un faune

Petrouchka

Dec 28 - 28, 2009

Ballet de l'Opera de Paris

The Paris exhibition at the Bibliotheque-Musee de l'Opera de Paris, Salle Garnier

Nov 2, 2009 - April 30, 2010

Les Ballets russes

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This is a review I wrote for the Friends of Connecticut Ballet Newsletter:

Several Friends of Connecticut Ballet went to the Wadsworth Antheneum to see

the Ballet Russe Collection owned by the Wadsworth. The exhibition included

real costumes worn by Nijinsky and the Ballet Russe, along with costume and

set drawings. This exhibition is part of the Centennial anniversary of

Diaghilev's Ballet Russe company. In the 1940 Wadsworth Director Chick Austin

purchased drawings, costumes, and posters for 10,000 dollars. The Wadsworth is

now the de facto center of research for Ballet Russe.

The exhibition,

http://www.wadsworthatheneum.org/view/exhi...amp;type=Future

included drawings by Joan Miro, Picasso, Matisse (no, not our wonderful

Company dancer from Hartford!), Baskt, and others. Drawings were hung next to

original costumes, one could see repairs and stains that all ballet costumes

go through. I spoke to a retired curator at the Wadsworth, and mentioned how

different current ballet costumes are: the hand work was amazing, everything

was hand painted and embroidered, no sequins and sparkly bits.

Several Ballets Russe performances were shown on projection screens, including

L¹Après-midi d¹un faune, Firebird, Petrushka, and Le Sacre de Printemps.

In another Gallery, I had a brief moment to see Couture inspired by The

Ballets Russe including drawings by Erte', and fashion inspired by

"Orientalism." Certainly worth a few moments to view. So much to see, so

little time.

After a delightful, but brief, dinner in the museum cafe, (One of our servers

danced with the Hartford Ballet!) We proceeded down to the Historic Aetna

Theater, A basement theater with and Art Deco wall paintings that reminded me

of Cavemen drawings in France. The theater is doubly significant as it is the

first American stage George Balanchine performed on, with the Wadsworth

sponsoring "Mr. B's" immigration to America.

We attended a short discussion by NY Times Ballet Critic Alistair Macaulay,

who discussed the history of the Ballets Russe and the relationships between

Diaghilev and his Dancers. Alistair discussed the scandal that accompanied

Nijinsky and the Company and the influence the company had on ballet since.

More details about the Centennial celebrations are in the current issue of

Forbes Life Magazine:

http://www.forbes.com/forbes-life-magazine...rt-culture.html

A copy is in the Periodical room of the Darien Library, which has some exceptional photographs.

The Wadsworth exhibition continues through 12 July 2009, and the Costume

exhibition until 2 August 2009. The New York Public Library for the Performing

Arts in Lincoln Center will have an Exhibition from June 26 through September

12 (www.nypl.org/research/lpa). The Friends of the Connecticut Ballet and

Director Brett Raphael will attend a performance of ABT's Swan Lake in June,

I'm planning on including extra time to visit the Exhibition at the NYPL

across the plaza.

My friends and I enjoyed the evening and all agreed we would do it again.

-Mike Young

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This is a review I wrote for the Friends of Connecticut Ballet Newsletter:

-Mike Young

Thank you for your full and interesting report. For someone across the pond who could not attend, it is most useful to get some idea of what the event is like.

Thank you for the Forbes link which also publishes events elsewhere.

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I have yet to visit the Wadsworth exhibition and won't make it to the Harriman Center (Columbia University) but in the meanwhile I'll add my two thumbs up for the current Ballets Russes exhibition in the Pusey Library at Harvard University. The scope of the decor and costume designs displayed is breathtaking (most from the Howard Rothschild collection). Various portraits of the dancers (many of these are frequently reproduced in books). A smattering of programs, letters and signed contracts (the Harvard Theatre Collection has a large archive of these). Several manuscript/autograph scores of the music for the ballets (Rieti's Le Bal, Dukelsky's Zephyr et Flore. etc). The exhibition space in the library is a bit cramped but it's hard to complain with so much available to view.

The exhibition opened during the 3-day symposim organized by the Harvard Theatre Collection: Diaghilev's Ballets Russes, 1909-1929: Twenty Years that Changed the World of Art. (April 15 - 17). Some 30 speakers coming from various disciplines, everyone had something interesting to say. Topics that I rashly presumed would bore me proved interesting after all. Among the many, that of Prof. Thomas Forrest Kelley on The First Night of The Rite of Spring was outstanding in content and delivery.

If you have any interest in the Ballets Russes you HAVE TO make it to this exhibition. It's on view through August 28. You might wait 'til June though, as nearby Boston University opens their Ballets Russes exhibition in late May following their symposium (I'll be there).

PHENBY

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An exhibition of Diaghilev ballet history material is to go on show at the Daniel Katz Gallery in London from the collection of Julian Barran. The exhibition runs from 19 May to 12 June 2009.

http://www.katz.co.uk/

PS

Regrettably they manage to garble Parmenia Ekstrom's name.

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It’s a shame that Spain has not joined Europe in the celebration of this centennial. The INAEM has rejected since 2006, several projects :angry2:

The company spent seasons in Madrid, Barcelona and San Sebastián. Also king Alfonso XIII was one of their sponsor.

But at least the Gran Teatre del Liceu in Barcelona has scheduled the ENB with their program Homage to the Ballets Russes on the centenary of their foundation.

If you visit the link you can see the posters announcing their participation in years, 1917, 1918, 1927 and 1928 :unsure:

I’m happy that I will be able to participate in a way :)

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I am happy to say that I attended the conference at Harvard, and found it to be interesting, fun and informative. The staff at the Harvard Theatre collection were very cordial and helpful. I took lots of notes, and I will post whatever I am able over the next few days. The schedule and much information is online.

First off, there was lots of "swag," and many informative brochures. When we registered we got not only the schedule and information for those of us who were new to the Harvard Sq. area, we received profiles of the participants, a biographical dictionary of selected dancers from the BR, a "pocket guide" to the BR with illustrations from the current exhibition at the Theatre Collection, containing chronological and alphabetical lists of the ballets produced (the chronological listings had details of each ballet), the operas produced, the unproduced and "derivative" works, and Indeces of composers, choreographers, librettists, designers. They served coffee and juice in the a.m.'s and supplies for the necessary sugar rush in the p.m.'s. There was a film (I didn't go), a presentation of "Petroushka" by Basil Twist (SUPERB) that was a hybrid of performance and demonstration of his techniques, and a dance presentation by Harvard students.

The coordinator of the conference, Frederick W. Wilson, also prepared a sort of spreadsheet with tabulations of the number of performances of EACH ballet, by year, with the date, city and theatre of each premiere.

We got a Diaghilev TEE SHIRT, a Diaghilev moleskin notebook, a lapel pin, a book bag. We got a list of items for sale. We got two boxes of note cards, beautifully printed: one of photos and objects in the exhibition and one of graphic work. I had been to the Balanchine exhibition in 2004 and they had produced a set of (15) notecards for that one as well, and I purchased FIVE boxes back then. For an additional $10 we can receive a DVD with just gobs of information and illustrations.

We had a private pre-opening tour of the exhibit at which they fed us superb hors d'oevres.

An unscheduled treat was the discovery that the great-granddaughter of Michel Tcherepnin and the daughter (or grand-daughter) of Massine were there and met each other. (I hope I got those names right.)

While a few of the topics were, for me, peripheral, most were right on the money, and fascinating. As Phenby mentioned, Thomas Forrest Kelly of harvard was a standout. He teaches a course called "Five First Nights," which is said to be one of the most popular in the University, and if his talk on April 16 was any indication, his popularity is deserved. Until the Time Machine that I ordered gets delivered (so I can GO to that first night) this will serve as a substitute.

What he did was to discuss the opening night of "The Rite of Spring," and talked to us as if we had been there! He kept saying, "you remember when..." which really drew people in. But his most important (for me) contribution was an illumination (with music and graphics) of how the rhythm worked in one particular very percussive section. If, for example, the section's chordal groupings were 9-2-6-3-4-5-3, and in the section of 9 chords the 4th and 7th chords were emphasized, he projected the score with each chord illuminated in when played, and the chords emphasized were red and the others yellow. That's not precise, but shows how he made the score and rhythms come to life. His energy and enthusiasm were amazing.

He also mentioned that Cechetti said that it was "done by 4 idiots," and thereafter referred to each of the creators (Nijinsky, Stravinsky, Roerich and Diaghilev) as "this idiot" etc.

Kelly feels that after the few performances of Nijinsky's "Rite" Stravinsky separated himself from the other "idiots" and tried to make it seem as if "Rite" was ALL his triumph. HE wrote the libretto, it was HIS idea, etc. He played a tape of I.S. speaking about it, that Kelly feels was read from written material, perhaps by Robert Kraft.

That's all I can write just now. I wish YOU had all been there.

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Regrettably they manage to garble Parmenia Ekstrom's name.

not to mention "Leonie Massive and Anton Dolan". :ermm:

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My memory is poor and so are my note taking skills, so please keep in mind I may not be wholly accurate in my account. Please correct any gross errors if you find them. I will not be offended.

Thank Heavens Lynn Garafola has had such a long and productive career with so many significant achievements, and that the Wadsworth had that trick step on the way up to the stage, or I would have missed the opening of her wonderful lecture.

I would have missed her opening story of James Joyce & Marcel Proust meeting and their discussion of various topics avoiding discussing each other’s work which it turned neither had read…not at some salon’s soiree, but rather during intermission at the Ballets Russes.

I’ve come to dread power point lectures, but Garafola’s reminded me that Powerpoint is only a tool and that in the right hands it enriches a lecture. I also enjoyed those moments when a nude was accidentally flashed on screen and quickly removed with the comment “oh, we’re not there yet” or something like… it was like when a ballet composer cunningly deploys the crash of cymbals in time to wake up the dozing audience for an important bit. But there was nothing dull about this lecture. She included some lovely images, Sargent’s portrait of Nijinsky; Picasso’s quick sketch of Diaghilev; and a photo of a luggage caravan of donkeys in Peru with Diaghilev incongruously perched atop the last one wearing his top hat. .

She also spoke at length defending Nijinksa and showed a very nice clip of Oakland Ballet peformng Les Biches back in the 1980s, staged with the assistance of Irina Nijinsky (sp?). She said something about Nijinska claiming her Les Noces was the first pure choreography without an accompanying story… but I thought Fokine’s Les Sylphides held that distinction… Garafola also gave background on Les Noces explaining why for the bride and groom, the wedding was a journey into the unknown rather than a joyous celebration…something I’d always sort of wondered about…

She pointed out that there was too little interest in the company’s productions of Giselle and Swan Lake for them to stay in the repertoire… surprising when one considers what mainstays of ballet companies they are now. To me, “Swan Lake” is almost synonymous with “Russian Ballet”, even if it wasn’t set in Russia.

Alas there was no time for questions, they allowed only one, as the museum had a movie scheduled for immediately after the lecture. I had so many questions, it’s probably just as well Dr. Garafola was spared them.

One was about the credit dispute over which Diaghilev left working for the Maryinski. I was wondering if there was something of a problem with giving credit where credit was due, considering the situation with Ivanov and Petipa.

Another question was how many “spare” ballets, like Les Noces, existed in the Ballets Russes repertoire. Balanchine made many of such works but I don’t believe any were costumed sparingly when they were produced by Diaghilev.

Another was about Massine’s theatrical style… his ballets seem so much more like “ballet theatre” than say Balanchine’s . Was this part of Diaghilev’s influence, or coincidence. I thought it interesting when she noted that one of Massine’s first two ballets, Liturgy, was never staged and wondered what the back story on that was.

Lincoln Kirstein was so very influenced by Diaghilev, almost as if he considered Diaghilev a role model… but he did not long seem to pursue the collaborative style of Diaghilev. Perhaps he appreciated Balanchine’s genius enough not to burden him with collaborators from outside the ballet world?

I wanted to ask about Nijinksy rejoining the company for the American tours after having been cast out. I have no doubt the American producers demanded his presence, but still wanted to hear more about how that went. And also, how it was that Nijinska was allowed in to work with the company when her brother was not. It seems there are stories not told there.

Happily, I overheard one audience member catch Garafola on her way out... asking what made one piece "modern dance" and another "ballet"... I held my breath! (It's a bit like asking someone, in passing, for their definition of "art")... she gave him a considered answer despite her host's rush, and rather than saying "pointe shoes", mentioned that "Les Biches" was the first piece they had done on pointe after a long while... that if the dancers prepared for the performance by taking a classical ballet warm-up class that it was a ballet.... (I'm not sure I heard that a'right... knowing many excellent modern dancers who preferred to warm up for distinctly modern pieces by taking a ballet class)... and something about the difference in point of view... that ballet expresses an institutional point of view, but Modern Dance expresses an individual point of view... I'm not sure I heard that right either, as she wasn't speaking directly to me... I think she said "personal point of view"... but I might have mis-heard.

Now I want to read her book, Diaghilev’s Ballets Russes, to learn more of how he managed the troupe. It was interesting that the direction of the troupe changed when it went from being a summer touring expedition to a year round company. I hadn’t realized that London had become such a home to the company, that it had a 3 month long run of Sleeping Beauty there… and it hadn’t occurred to me, though it should have, that after the revolution the desire to mount that ballet would have had something to do with nostalgia for imperial Russia. Having heard stories of his fundraising efforts, it hadn’t occurred to me before that of course his funding resources at home disappeared with the revolution. It also now is more meaningful when I think of how strongly Sleeping Beauty has been associated with the Royal Ballet. She mentioned that the production had been a financial disaster and that the company had lost it’s costumes. She said that, however, the Wadsworth had acquired them. I would have liked to have heard the story of how came about.

The exhibit is only up a few more weeks. Until Midsummer’s Night, I believe. I encourage everyone to come. And I apologize, the last time I dashed through so quickly that I didn’t spot the famous Nijinsky faune original and wondered if it were on loan to Boston. It’s not, it’s at the Wadsworth. It’s so much larger in my memory than in real life, but it is there. It is not brightly lit, no doubt to preserve it, but one might not even notice the gold worked into the image, and I feel something magical is lessened with out it.

I didn't quite catch the docent's tour, but was a little disturbed to hear her going on about Josephine Baker being the very first black ballerina... I have lots of respect for Josephine Baker's talent and believe she was certainly a star, but "ballerina" is misused there, even loosely; I thought that was a bit of a disservice to Raven Wilkenson, and after some rather odd pronunciations, I continued on to the next gallery to watch the ballet projections. They were showing Andris Liepa's film of Firebird, which was done with the consent of the Fokine Estate.... but I thought I heard at it's NY premiere some dissent that it is not very authentic? Is that true? Or was it minor complaints about the staging?

If you go, don’t miss a trip over to the Wadsworth’s regular costume gallery, where in addition to some more costume sketches there are several examples of Ballets Russes inspired evening wear.

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"My memory is poor and so are my note taking skills, so please keep in mind I may not be wholly accurate in my account."

Vivid enough for me. Well done. I am most grateful for your contribution.

Ps

Along with the rest of the world I have been guilty in promoting a

Centerary of the Diaghilev Ballet Russe which actually takes

place in 1911 when the company assumed that name. What is really being celebrated

this year is the centenary of the, "Saison Russe." at the Chatelet Theatre.

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Ballet Russes Exhibition - Schwäne und Feuervögel LES BALLETS RUSSES 1909 - 1929 opens tomorrow in Vienna.

http://www.khm.at/en/kunsthistorisches-mus...e0fc#highlights

(Images at bottom of page come up very well when double-clicked)

Hamburg's Nijinsky exhibition - Dance of Colours. Nijinsky's Eye and Abstraction - is on-going. Exhibition flyer can be downloaded at the link below

http://www.hamburger-kunsthalle.de/start/en_start.html

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Thanks, Amy and CM, for the Links

RE the exhibit at the Kunsthistorische Museum: I'm puzzled about the 7th illustration (out of 7). Can anyone identify a ballet called "The Mask of the Red Death"? Was this in the Ballet Russe season in 1916-17? Who or what is the "small idol" so beautifully illustrated here?

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Thanks, Amy and CM, for the Links

RE the exhibit at the Kunsthistorische Museum: I'm puzzled about the 7th illustration (out of 7). Can anyone identify a ballet called "The Mask of the Red Death"? Was this in the Ballet Russe season in 1916-17? Who or what is the "small idol" so beautifully illustrated here?

Apr 11 2006,

In the Tcherepnin Le Pavillion D'Armide thread on Apr 11 2006, Phenby wrote the following.

"In his twenty years of ballet and opera productions Diaghilev only rejected a commissioned score a handful of times. Tcherepnin heads the list as having produced two such scores.

In the early seasons Diaghilev had a secretary/advisor by the name of M. D. Calvocoressi, a young French music critic. Calvocoressi met a young, unknown composer (I forget the name) who had written a ballet score on his own entitled La masque de la mort rouge (The Mask of Red Death after Edgar Allen Poe). Calvocoressi passed the score along to Diaghilev who wasn't interested in the music but found the story an interesting idea for a ballet. Diaghilev approached Stravinsky on the subject but was rejected. So he turned to ... Nikolai Tcherepnin.

In 1913, when Tcherepnin composed his ballet, Fokine had been dismissed and Nijinsky was now choreographer of the Ballets Russes. But Nijinsky was very slow and couldn't be counted upon to produce four new ballets every season. So for the 1913 season Adolph Bolm and Boris Romanov, two dancers in the company, were given their first opportunities to choreograph (both went on to long careers as choreographers). Tcherepnin's La masque de la mort rouge was schedualed for the 1914 season, but since Nijinsky was already overextended with preparations for two other ballets, Diaghilev assigned Tcherepnin's ballet to a guest choreographer: Alexander Gorsky. Then the rupture between Nijinsky and Diaghilev occured. As a result, Fokine came back to the Ballets Russes for the 1914 season and took charge of all new choreography. La masque de la mort rouge and Gorsky were scrapped."

Sarah Banes in her book Writing Dancing in the Age of Postmodernism however states, “Goleizovsky began work in 1919 on “The Masque of the Red Death” and Eric W. Carlson In his “A Companion to Poe Studies” says that the ballet was given in 1919 at the Moscow Kamerny Theatre.

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Thanks, leonid, for bringing back the history. I had never heard of this before. Given the vogue of Poe and the special qualities of Mask of the Red Death -- an isolated castle, an autocratic prince, a decadent court, an adventurous but naive leading man, etc., etc. -- I'd always thought this should have been a fin de siecle ballet. Balanchine's Night Shadow (Sonnambula) comes close. I wonder what part the "Little Idol" in the illustration played in the Bohm-Romanov story?

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I have seen the three Ballets Russes exhibitions currently on view in the U.S. several times. The collections of the NYPL are not blessed with abundance of visual materials to be found at the Harvard Theatre Collection or the Wadsworth Athenaeum. Since many of the items in the New York exhibition are on loan from private collections curato Lynn Garafola is to be congratulated for putting on an excellent show of Diaghilev material.

There are costumes, only one of which is an actual Diaghilev original from the 1908 production of Boris Godunov. The rest are mostly from the Joffrey Company’s recreations: Tricorne (1969), Pétrouchka (1970), Parade (1973), Spectre de la Rose (1979), Sacre du printemps (1987) and Chout (never staged: curious that Joffrey was interested in recreating this). Also one costume from Les Biches : Dance Theater of Harlem (1983).

Several monitors display clips from some of the Diaghilev ballets: Joffrey’s Pétrouchka and Parade, New York’s Fils prodigue, and several from the Royal Ballet in black and white (some with scripted commentary by Karsavina): Pétrouchka, Oiseau de feu, Sylphides, Spectre de la Rose, Les Noces. I was especially fascinated by an excerpt from Massine’s Femmes de bonne humeur, although the original footage was silent and the added piano accompaniment suffered from synchronization problems. For the many casual visitors (this exhibition, after all, is presented in a public library) the costumes and film clips really make the Ballets Russes come alive. Last, a clip from Pavlova’s film The Dumb Girl from Portici. Of this latter no comment.

The center of interest of every Ballets Russes exhibition seems to lie in the direction of costume/scenic designs. There are about twenty on view at the NYPL, several from a private collection (and previously unknown to me).

Bakst: costume designs from Cléopâtre (1909) and Narcisse (1911), a set design for Femmes de bonne humeur, and a costume for the Sleeping Princess (1921).

Benois: a set design for Pavillon d’Armide (1909).

Gontcharova: two costumes for the projected Liturgie (1915), a set design and three costumes from Les Noces (fascinating the comparison between her preliminary version and the finished item), and a set and a costume design for the restaging of Oiseau de feu (1926).

Larionov: set design for Renard (1929).

Robert Edmond Jones: costume design from Nijinsky’s ill-fated Till Eulenspiegel (1916).

Juan Gris: costume design from Les Tentations de la Bergère.

Pavel Tchelechev: a set and a costume design from Ode (1928).

Giorgio de Chirico: a costume design from Le Bal (1929).

There are Ballets Russes programs on display as well as from other ballet companies of the era: Pavlova, Gertrude Hoffmann, Truhanova, Chauvre-souris, Ballets suedois, and La Argentina.

Correspondance of Diaghilev, Astruc, Anton Dolin, Lifar, Balanchine and … Cole Porter.

Production photos, portraits, rare book editions, Diaghilev’s autograph notebooks (1909-11) and (ca 1916-20), Nijinsky’s autography Diary (YES, that famous diary!!), and two of Grigoriev’s autograph notebooks.

Last, four autograph documents from Diaghilev’s greatest musical star, Igor Stravinsky, on loan from the Julliard collection: sketches for Oiseau de feu and Pétrouchka and corrected scores for Les Noces and Apollon Musagète.

Before I leave New York City I must mention the large exhibition of theatrical designs currently on display at the Museum of Modern Art. Most of these relate to US ballet productions (many are gifts of Lincoln Kirstein), among which a few from the Ballets Russes. There is a scene design by Gontcharova for Coq d’or and another by Bakst.

Also costumes (reproductions) for the French Manager (small differences from the NYPL example) and the Horse from Parade are included.

While you have until Sept 13 to view the NPYL exhibition, this is the last week of the Wadsworth Athenaeum (closing the 21st). If there is interest I’ll post a resumé of that exhibition. Harvard’s show closes August 28.

Did I mention NYPL and Harvard are free admission?

PHENBY

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I have seen the three Ballets Russes exhibitions currently on view in the U.S. several times. The collections of the NYPL are not blessed with abundance of visual materials to be found at the Harvard Theatre Collection or the Wadsworth Athenaeum. Since many of the items in the New York exhibition are on loan from private collections curato Lynn Garafola is to be congratulated for putting on an excellent show of Diaghilev material. PHENBY

Brilliant. I had hoped for some more reports as I understand they do not have exhibition catalogues that one could purchase. A sign of the times. Bravo for staging the exhibitions and thank you PHENBY for your post.

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Thanks, Amy and CM, for the Links

RE the exhibit at the Kunsthistorische Museum: I'm puzzled about the 7th illustration (out of 7). Can anyone identify a ballet called "The Mask of the Red Death"? Was this in the Ballet Russe season in 1916-17? Who or what is the "small idol" so beautifully illustrated here?

Apr 11 2006,

In the Tcherepnin Le Pavillion D'Armide thread on Apr 11 2006, Phenby wrote the following.

"In his twenty years of ballet and opera productions Diaghilev only rejected a commissioned score a handful of times. Tcherepnin heads the list as having produced two such scores.

In the early seasons Diaghilev had a secretary/advisor by the name of M. D. Calvocoressi, a young French music critic. Calvocoressi met a young, unknown composer (I forget the name) who had written a ballet score on his own entitled La masque de la mort rouge (The Mask of Red Death after Edgar Allen Poe). Calvocoressi passed the score along to Diaghilev who wasn't interested in the music but found the story an interesting idea for a ballet. Diaghilev approached Stravinsky on the subject but was rejected. So he turned to ... Nikolai Tcherepnin.

In 1913, when Tcherepnin composed his ballet, Fokine had been dismissed and Nijinsky was now choreographer of the Ballets Russes. But Nijinsky was very slow and couldn't be counted upon to produce four new ballets every season. So for the 1913 season Adolph Bolm and Boris Romanov, two dancers in the company, were given their first opportunities to choreograph (both went on to long careers as choreographers). Tcherepnin's La masque de la mort rouge was schedualed for the 1914 season, but since Nijinsky was already overextended with preparations for two other ballets, Diaghilev assigned Tcherepnin's ballet to a guest choreographer: Alexander Gorsky. Then the rupture between Nijinsky and Diaghilev occured. As a result, Fokine came back to the Ballets Russes for the 1914 season and took charge of all new choreography. La masque de la mort rouge and Gorsky were scrapped."

Sarah Banes in her book Writing Dancing in the Age of Postmodernism however states, “Goleizovsky began work in 1919 on “The Masque of the Red Death” and Eric W. Carlson In his “A Companion to Poe Studies” says that the ballet was given in 1919 at the Moscow Kamerny Theatre.

I don't know how reliable Grigoriev is compared to other sources, however he wrote in ' the Diaghilev Ballet' that Gorsky was engaged in 1913 as guest choreographer for the Red Mask. However, Tcherepnine had not finished the score by the time Diaghilev's committee made the decisions on the 1914 spring ballet program - so the piece couldn't be included. I think I remember reading that Gorsky never got round to choreographing the 'Red Mask because other events, such as the first world war, took over.

Also Diaghilev exhibition is still on in Monaco

http://www.nmnm.mc/index.php/nmnm_en/content/view/full/59

Article below includes slide show with podcast (in french)

http://www.podcastjournal.net/Centenaire-d...anov_a2375.html

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I don't know how reliable Grigoriev is compared to other sources, however he wrote in ' the Diaghilev Ballet' that Gorsky was engaged in 1913 as guest choreographer for the Red Mask. However, Tcherepnine had not finished the score by the time Diaghilev's committee made the decisions on the 1914 spring ballet program - so the piece couldn't be included. I think I remember reading that Gorsky never got round to choreographing the 'Red Mask because other events, such as the first world war, took over.

Also Diaghilev exhibition is still on in Monaco

Ballet, concerts, theatre and the circus continued in Moscow and St.Petersburg with some interruptions throughout the war period and Goleizovsky was producing ballets at the Kamerny Theatre Moscow during 1919. It was the content of the story that prevented his staging of, "The Masque of the Red Death."

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Complementing the link to the current Monaco exhibition, the link below includes footage of the Edinburgh Diaghilev exhibition (1953/1954?) that marked the 25th anniversary of Diaghilev's death. Exhibition footage begins at 4 minutes, 20 seconds. Firebird is at 10 minutes, 15 seconds. Thanks to Leonid for links to British Pathe.

http://www.britishpathe.com/record.php?id=74893

Roy Strong describes and discusses the impact of the exhibition (London transfer) in his 2001 obituary of Richard Buckle, the exhibition's organiser.

http://www.guardian.co.uk/Archive/Article/...4276346,00.html

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