The definitive guide to the Russian Method of ballet, this complete, unabridged original version is the basis for all other classical ballet textbooks. It contains expanded text, entirely new sections, and corrections. Agrippina Vaganova articulates her own role in the rebirth of Russian ballet, discusses the body and its expressive capabilities, and explains how to attain a harmonious totality in dance. With additional documentation, photos, and contextual analysis, this edition contains a new biographical essay, a comprehensive summary of Vaganova’s lifetime achievements, photos of her as a dancer in some of her greatest roles and as a teacher with her students, and important new research into the influence of the Italians, led by Enrico Cecchetti, on the development of Russian ballet. Penetrating, insightful, and authoritative, this is much more than a textbook; it is the best guide available to Russian ballet technique and the Vaganova Method.
Agrippina Vaganova, Russia’s most celebrated ballet teacher, was born in St. Petersburg in 1879. She joined the Maryinsky Theater Ballet in 1897 and was promoted to soloist in 1905 and to Prima Ballerina in 1915. She taught at the State Theater School and was Director of the State Theater Ballet (later known as the Kirov Ballet) from 1931-37. She played a pivotal role in the rebirth of Russian ballet, and her teaching method has gained unparalleled fame throughout the world. She published the 1st edition of her classic book, Foundations of Classical Ballet, in 1934 and this 3rd edition in 1948. Bruce Michelson performed worldwide as a dancer with Pittsburgh Ballet Theatre, Hamburg Ballet, Ballet Rambert, Geneva Ballet and Nederlands Dans Theater. He has served as balletmaster and guest teacher for dance companies across Europe and is now Professor at Italy’s National Academy of Dance. Correspondent for Dance Europe magazine since 2003, he has also translated numerous dance texts from various languages into English, including Flavia Pappacena’s The Language of Classical Ballet. Aleksandr Wilansky was trained in the Vaganova and Tarasov Methods and has had a long career as a dancer, actor, writer and theater director. He is a specialist in Diaghilev-era repertoire and was assistant to the balletmaster Nicolai Beriosoff. In 1996, the Polish Government awarded him the Nijinsky Medal, in recognition of his life's work in preserving, producing and educating in the world of dance.
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