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Ballet of the Elephants

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This looks like fun -- Ballet of the Elephants.

From the NY Times review by The New Republic's art critic, Jed Perl --

One of the strangest and loveliest high-meets-low moments in American culture dates to 1942, when the Ringling Brothers and Barnum & Bailey Circus mounted a ballet for 50 elephants, with music by Igor Stravinsky and choreography by George Balanchine. . . . Now there's a children's book devoted to this uniquely American experiment, and Leda Schubert's deft, incisive way of telling the incredible story will set young minds spinning.

"Ballet of the Elephants" embraces an extraordinary range of lives. There is John Ringling North, one of the owners of the circus; the friends and collaborators Balanchine and Stravinsky, who shared Russian beginnings and early artistic triumphs in Europe, and who both ended up in America; Vera Zorina, the ballerina, who was married for a time to Balanchine; and Modoc, the largest Indian elephant in America.

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Thanks, kfw. It sounds lovely. I was intrigued by the following statement:

Woven through this casually opulent volume is an inspiriting idea: that boys and girls will be tantalized by the works and days of geniuses like Balanchine and Stravinsky, men whose achievements our dumb-it-down era sometimes regards as too demanding even for adults.

Who is this Balanchine guy, anyway? Could the reviewer have been thinking about the immortal television team of Stravinsky and Hutch? :shake:

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