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Shiryaev book


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the attached scan shows the cover of a recently published book:

ALEXANDER SHIRYAEV, Master of Movement, it focuses on his career on stage and as a filmmaker: as has been pointed out on this site variously, AS was the original 'buffon' and actual choreographer of "Ivanov's" hoop dance in THE NUTCRACKER). the cover is scanned below, the publication's copyright is 2009, Le Giornate del Cinema Muto

the price given on the back of the book is 24.00 euros. (i have not idea how to obtain a copy hereabouts, my copy was sent to me by David Robinson, the film historian/editor with whom i was in touch during the book's publication for which i provided some photocards for illustrations - alas not all the captions are correct, including one a photo sent by me, tho' the error is the editors, not mine: the photo shows Pavlova in ONDINE and the caption says AWAKENING OF FLORA.

(the cover illustration of AS in one showing him in one of his famous hornpipe solos and comes from the Legat brothers' folio of caricatures from the turn of the 20th century.)


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Another article about Shiryaev.

"In 20 years as a dancer with the Marinsky Theatre in St Petersburg, Shiryaev took on all the male character parts. In his eagerness to pass on these dances to future generations he offered to use his keen amateur skills as a filmmaker to document the popular scenes of the day. His request for permission to film was refused." ....

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A. Vaganova mentions Shiryaev in the Supplement (Note 3) (transl. by Stanley Applebaum) of the 4th edition of Basic Principles of Classical Ballet (1969 Dover edition, transl. A. Chujoy) as follows:

"In my time character classes were practically never given; the work was learned from assorted dance numbers. The exercises for character ballets were worked out in detail in the 1920s by Alexander Shiryaev, who systematized the movements of character ballets and thereby enormously facilitated work in this area."

Moreover, in the Introduction to the Fourth Russian Edition, V. Chistyakova writes:

"While Vaganova was still living, her associates at the Leningrad State Ballet School, Alexander Shiryaev , Alexander Bocharov and Andrei Lopukhov, worked out , for the first time in the history of balletic art, a method for character ballet, expounding it in the book Basic Principles of Character Ballet (published by "Iskusstvo", 1939)."

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Shiryaev's book on character dance, written with co-authors, and fomatted similarly to Vaganova's on "classical dance" with line drawing illusrations, etc. was translated by Joan Lawson, but it seems the English version is edited down from the full Russian text, which is longer.

the English version is as follows:

Character dance / Andrei Lopoukhov, Alexander Shirayev and Alexander Bocharov ; translated by Joan Lawson.

London : Dance Books : Distributed in the USA by Princeton Book Co., Princeton, N.J., 1986.

122 p. : ill. ; 24 cm.

Translated from the Russian.

Includes Russian, Hungarian, Polish, Gipsy, and Spanish character dance.

i believe the 1939 Russian version has recently been reprinted in Russia.

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the attached scan is from a double-page spread of the Russian publication of the Shiryaev (et alia) study of character dance.

[Moderators: if this scan is too big, resolution-wise, feel free to remove it. the scan comes from a friend who put it in this form and i'm unskilled in shrinking the hi-res. file to a lower res. one.]


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In response to my inquiry on possible alternate methods of payment (other than snail mail), the book's publisher wrote back to me that the tome will soon be available on-line through the Italian equivalent of Amazon.com:


So if we wait a couple of weeks, we should be able to pay for it on-line, if we wish.

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