“Engulfed in a Whirlwind”: Diaghilev’s Dancers in the Postwar Ballets Russes

in Experiment
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During Worl War I and the postwar period, the Ballets Russes bacame a truly international company, forced to absorb and adapt to the very latest trends in contemporary Western culture. This article describes the challenges facing dancers in the post-war period.

“Engulfed in a Whirlwind”: Diaghilev’s Dancers in the Postwar Ballets Russes

in Experiment




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    Viktor Bulla: Photograph of Lenin making a speech on Palace (Uritsky) Square in Petrograd on 19 July, 1920. Lenin, closest to the parapet, is facing the Alexander Column, while behind him is the Winter Palace. George Balanchine is somewhere in the crowd.

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    George Balanchine and Tamara Geva in Petrograd, 1923.

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    Portrait of Nina (Ninette) Devalois (Ninette de Valois).

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    Adolf Bolm, Serge Grigoriev, Léonide Massine, Lydia Sokolova, Hilda Bewick, Serge Diaghilev, Lydia Lopokova, Lubov Tchernicheva, Olga Kokhlova, and Nicholas Kremnefff leaving Chicago on board a train during their American tour in 1916. Photograph courtesy of the Glinka Museum of Theatrical and Musical Art, St. Petersburg.

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    Lydia Sokolova as the Chosen Maiden in Le Sacre du Printemps, London, 1920. Reproduced from Richard Buckle, ed.: Dancing for Diaghilev. The Memoirs of Lydia Sokolova (New York: Macmillan, 1962), between pp. 166-67.


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