Alexandra Danilova in Neoclassical Ballet Appolon Musagète (1928)

Apollo (originally Apollon musagète and variously known as Apollo musagetes, Apolo Musageta, and Apollo, Leader of the Muses) is a neoclassical ballet in two tableaux composed between 1927 and 1928 by Igor Stravinsky. It was choreographed in 1928 by twenty-four-year-old George Balanchine, with the composer contributing the libretto. The scenery and costumes were designed by André Bauchant, with new costumes by Coco Chanel in 1929.

The scenario involved the birth of Apollo, his interactions with the three Muses, Calliope (poetry), Polyhymnia (mime) and Terpsichore (dance and song), and his ascent as a god to Mount Parnassus. The original cast included Serge Lifar as Apollo, Alice Nikitina as Terpsichore (alternating with Alexandra Danilova), Lubov Tchernicheva as Calliope, Felia Doubrovska as Polyhymnia and Sophie Orlova as Leto, mother of Apollo.

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Alexandra Danilova in Appolon Musagète, 1928 via

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Alexandra Danilova and Serge Lifar in Appolon Musagète, 1928 via

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Alexandra Danilova and Serge Lifar in Appolon Musagète, 1928 via

Beautiful Ethereal Edwardian Postcards

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Detail of a French postcard via

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Antique Hand Tinted Real Photo Postcard via

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Antique theatre photo postcard, vintage stage artist Marguerite Brésil via

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Woodland Nymph Examines Leaf, German Postcard, Posted in France, 1909 via

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Romantic Portrait of Edwardian Lady in Ethereal Green Gown by Seaside with Pink Flowers & Columns, early 1900s via

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Edwardian Ballet Dancer Gwen Hope in Sparkling Tutu Costume and Fairy Wings, early 1900s via

Vintage Photos of the Very Elegant Prima Ballerina Alicia Markova

Dame Alicia Markova DBE (1910 – 2004) was an English ballerina and a choreographer, director and teacher of classical ballet. Most noted for her career with Sergei Diaghilev’s Ballets Russes and touring internationally, she was widely considered to be one of the greatest classical ballet dancers of the twentieth century. She was the first British dancer to become the principal dancer of a ballet company.

With Dame Margot Fonteyn, she is one of only two English dancers to be recognised as a prima ballerina assoluta. Markova was a founder dancer of the Rambert Dance Company, The Royal Ballet and American Ballet Theatre, and was co-founder and director of the English National Ballet.

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Alicia Markova in Giselle, as she appeared for the first time with the Grand Ballet du Marquis de Cuevas at the Empire Theatre, Paris, on November 21, 1953. Photo by Serge Lido via

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Alicia Markova – America’s Nutcracker Suite-heart © Maurice Seymour via

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The feisty Markova in Les Masques, 1933 via

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Dame Alicia Markova (Lilian Alicia Marks) dans La Chatte (Boris Kochno – Henri Sauguet – George Balanchine pour les Ballets Russes de Serge Diaghilev), ca 1927 via

Vintage Photos of Russian Prima Ballerina Alexandra Danilova

Aleksandra Dionisyevna Danilova (1903 – 1997) was a Russian-born prima ballerina, who became an American citizen. In 1989, she was recognized for lifetime achievements in ballet as a Kennedy Center Honoree.

Born in Peterhof, Russia on November 20, 1903, she trained at the Russian Imperial Ballet School in Leningrad (formerly and currently St. Petersburg). She was one of the few Russian-trained ballerinas to tour outside Russia. Her first professional post was as a member of St. Petersburg’s Imperial Ballet.

In 1924, she and George Balanchine left Russia. They were soon picked up by Sergei Diaghilev’s Ballets Russes; Danilova as a dancer, Balanchine as a choreographer. Danilova toured for years with the Ballets Russes under Sergei Diaghilev, then with the Ballet Russe de Monte Carlo after Diaghilev’s death.[1] With the latter company, Danilova andFrederic Franklin created one of the legendary ballet partnerships of the twentieth century. Danilova became known for her glamour and beautiful legs, as well as her work ethic and professionalism.

Danilova made her Broadway debut in 1944’s Song of Norway; her last ballet performance was in 1957.

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Alexandra Danilova photographed by George Platt Lynes, c. 1930s via

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 Alexandra Danilova as a star of Colonel de Basil’s Ballet Russe  (1936)  by Maurice Seymour. Courtesy of Ronald Seymour/Maurice Seymour Archive via

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Alexandra Danilova in Ballet Russe’s Nutcracker via

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F. Franklin and Alexandra Danilova by Irving Penn, 1948 via

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The Legs of Danilova, New York by Erwin Blumenfeld, 1950 via

Alexandra Danilova dances in Gaite Parisienne

Portraits of the Legendary Ballerina Marie Taglioni (1804-1884)

Marie Taglioni (1804 – 1884) was an Italian/Swedish ballet dancer of the Romantic ballet era, a central figure in the history of European dance. Her fragile, delicate dancing typified the early 19th-century Romantic style. She became one of the first women to dance on the extreme tips, or points, of the toes; she created a new style marked by floating leaps, such balanced poses as the arabesque, and a delicate, restrained use of the points.

Trained chiefly by her father, Filippo Taglioni, she made her debut in Vienna in 1822. In her father’s ballet La Sylphide, introduced at the Paris Opéra, March 12, 1832.

In the performance of La Sylphide Taglioni was also known for shortening her skirt, which was considered highly scandalous at the time. The diaphanous dress she wore, with its fitted bodice and airy, bell-like skirt, was the prototype of the tutu. She shortened all of her skirts to show off her excellent pointe work, which the long skirts hid. Her father was approving of the shortening of the skirt because he also wanted everyone to see how good his daughter was en pointe.

In London Taglioni commanded £100 a performance and she filled the St. Petersburg Bolshoi Theatre to capacity when she played in La Sylphide. The Russians loved her so much that they named cakes and caramels after her. A group of her fans even ate a pair of her ballet shoes after her last performance in 1842. These were cooked, garnished, and served with a special sauce so one hopes that they tasted good! – See more at: http://www.lifeinitaly.com/heroes-villains/marie-taglioni.asp#sthash.zwYUhCJE.dpuf

Not only did she have Paris at her feet but audiences in London, Milan, Vienna, Berlin, and St. Petersburg hailed her as one of the greatest dancers ballet had ever produced.

In London Taglioni commanded £100 a performance and she filled the St. Petersburg Bolshoi Theatre to capacity when she played in La Sylphide. The Russians loved her so much that they named cakes and caramels after her. A group of her fans even ate a pair of her ballet shoes after her last performance in 1842. These were cooked, garnished, and served with a special sauce (Source).

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Maria Taglioni in “La Sylphide”, © Bettmann/CORBIS via

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Marie Taglioni by Richard James Lane, printed by Graf & Soret, published by Rudolph Ackermann Jr lithograph, circa 1825-1850 25 1/8 in. x 18 3/4 in. (638 mm x 475 mm) paper size Given by Austin Lane Poole, 1956 © National Portrait Gallery, London via

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Marie Taglioni by Richard James Lane, printed by M & N Hanhart, after Alfred Edward Chalon lithograph, 1845 21 1/2 in. x 15 in. (545 mm x 382 mm) paper size Given by Austin Lane Poole, © National Portrait Gallery, London, 1956 via

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Marie Taglioni by Richard James Lane, printed by M & N Hanhart, after Alfred Edward Chalon lithograph, 1845 21 1/2 in. x 15 in. (545 mm x 382 mm) paper size Given by Austin Lane Poole, © National Portrait Gallery, London, 1956 via