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Marina Timofeyevna Semyonovadied today, at 102


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#16 Mel Johnson

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Posted 10 June 2010 - 10:30 AM

Something in my memory-box recalls that she had a leadership role in protecting ballet companies during the Great Purges of 1934-38. Perhaps the Voice of Russia article conflated the two, or just telescoped one into the other. It happens all over the journalism world.

#17 leonid

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Posted 10 June 2010 - 11:02 AM

Something in my memory-box recalls that she had a leadership role in protecting ballet companies during the Great Purges of 1934-38. Perhaps the Voice of Russia article conflated the two, or just telescoped one into the other. It happens all over the journalism world.


Her husband was a victim of the purges. His name was Lev Mikhailovich Karakhan a senior diplomat who was murdered in 1937.

Added:

The reason she was considered to be a "saviour of the art", was because in her early years she epitomised the highest aspirations of Russian classical ballet and was of course one of Vaganova's most important early students.

Regarding Marina Semyonova I remember her also in London taking great care of Nina Ananiashvilli.

#18 richard53dog

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Posted 10 June 2010 - 11:09 AM

Something in my memory-box recalls that she had a leadership role in protecting ballet companies during the Great Purges of 1934-38. Perhaps the Voice of Russia article conflated the two, or just telescoped one into the other. It happens all over the journalism world.



That sounds much more plausible!

#19 leonid

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Posted 10 June 2010 - 11:35 AM

Marina Semyonova dancing "Boston Waltz" in Konstantin Eggert's 1934 film "Nastenka Ustinova".



Thank you Cristian.

Such expressive arms and back. Certainly an indication, but not enough to show why she was so revered, but I am sure much more representative of her qualities than the Swan Lake film made too late in her career which she insisted on filming, despite friendly discouragement from her colleagues.

#20 Paul Parish

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Posted 11 June 2010 - 09:15 AM

Semenova's white swan really moved me -- especially Odette in her solo variation, which she made extremely intimate, tender, delicate, poignant. i have never seen anyone else make that dance so expressive. It's a difficult dance, and it looked like she chose to dance through it (like Suzanne Farrell) without worrying about whether or not she was on her leg, and she often was not but turned that to advantage and made it part of the phrasing, so the vulnerability and the bravery and hte fidelity to hte cantilena came through and made me love her.

#21 Pamela Moberg

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Posted 11 June 2010 - 03:25 PM

I am saddened to hear of the demise of Marina Semyonova - yet she had a long and rich life and I do hope that her last years were devoid of too much health problems.

Finnish Tv is good at broadcasting culture programs and indeed I know that I have some footage of her from the forties. (This is rather embarrassing to admit - I worked at cataloging in the British Museum, yet I admit I am hopeless at cataloging my taped footage. Promise to make an effort here, such old pieces of old film bits and pieces, even if they are only seconds long, are invaluable).


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