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Emperor Aleksandr II and Empress Maria (formerly Marie of Hesse)

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Thanks, rg. It's always nice to get a chance to see some of the historical context behind the ballets and the dancers. The Empress's portrait is charming and more flattering than some. Unfortunately, Alexander II -- rather liberal as Tsars go and the man who liberated the serfs -- was assassinated. NOT by a balletomane, I bellieve. :thumbsup:

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indeed there are other portraits of this tsaritsa, Maria Fyedorovna, which show the empress in a less flattering light.

also, the francophilic russian court used the name THEATRE MARIE on posters for the theater's offerings, as often as not, rather than Maryinsky.

the attached scan, prob. from around 1905 shows a postcard of the theater at the turn of the 20th c.


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Bart is correct. Alexander II was assassinated by not one, but TWO bombs thrown by two separate anarchists. They had a third relief pitcher in case they missed, leaving us to wonder at the state of their anarchism. Nicholas II, then 13, was at his grandfather's deathbed, and the experience shook him severely.

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