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 Tamara Karsavina

Born:   1885
Deceased:   July 26, 1978



Tamara Karsavina is the founder of crucially new tendencies of ballet of the early 20th century, later called 'intellectual art'. Her splendid gift revealed itself when working on Fokin's productions.

She was born in St.-Petersburg into the family of Platon Karsavin, a dancer of the Mariinsky Theatre.

When a student of St.-Petersburg Theatre College she made her debut with the solo part of Amour at the first night of Don Quixote staged by A. Gorsky who was her teacher at the college.

She stepped into ballet art during the crises of academism and search of new ways out of it. Admirers of academic ballet found lots of flaws in Krasavina's execution of her parts. Her splendid gift revealed itself when working on Fokin's productions.

Mikhail Fokin staged for her the 7th Waltz in Chopeniana, parts of Slave in Egypt Nights, Fiery Bird in the same name ballet, Shemakhan Queen in Golden Cockerel, and others. Karsavina's best parts were those danced in duet with Vatslav Nijinsky (that of Girl in Vision of a Rose and Ballerina in Petrushka).

Tamara Karsavina made use of her styling artistry developed while working with innovative Mikhail Fokin also in her academic repertoire. She danced first parts in ballets Jizel, Swan Lake, Raimonda, Nutcracker, Sleeping Beauty, etc.

From 1909 she toured with Dyagilev's company, in which she danced till 1929 and performed in more ballets of L. Myasin (Songs of Nightingale, Pultchinella, etc)

In 1918 she married English diplomat G. Brus and lived in London since then.

In 1931 she quit the stage. Karsavina is the author of several articles, memoirs and manuals on classical dance. In 1930-1935 she was Vice President of the English Dance Royal Academy.

She died in London on July 26, 1978.


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