Ibid. The Sleeping Princess... the entire production by M. Leon Bakst. Music by P. Tchaikovsky. London: Alhambra Theatre, , 12 coloured illustrations of designs by Bakst, coloured cover designed by Bakst
Ibid. Ballets Russes de Serge de Diaghilew. Paris: Théâtre des Champs-Elysées, 1924, 5 illustrations by Picasso, plain and coloured illustrations, original wrappers
Ibid. XXIe saison des Ballets Russes de Serge de Diaghilew. Paris, 1928, plain illustrations, coloured wrappers
Ibid. Ballets Russes de Diaghilew 1909 à 1929, exposition organisée par Serge Lifar avril-mai 1939. Paris, 1939, plain illustrations, original wrappers, gilt panel on upper cover with design by Bakst, ink scribbles on upper wrapper
together 5 items
a fine collection of superbly illustrated programmes dedicated to Diaghilev's legendary Ballets Russes. There are many highlights here, including, especially, the beautifully reproduced Picasso illustrations in the 1924 volume and Bakst's exquisite costume designs for the premiere of Richard Strauss's La légende de Joseph (contained in the famous 1914 souvenir).
Sergei Diaghilev (1872-1929) had earlier mounted exhibitions of Russian art in Paris before, in 1909, presenting for the first time the “Ballets Russes de Serge Diaghilev”. As well as using pre-existing music, by composers such as Rimsky-Korsakov, Glazunov, Glinka and Mussorgsky, Diaghilev also commissioned a large number of works by new composers such as Stravinsky, who gained his international fame from three spectacular works commissioned by Diaghilev: The Firebird (1910), Petrushka (1911) and The Rite of Spring (1913). Other composers who wrote for the Ballets Russes included Debussy, Ravel, Richard Strauss, Milhaud, Satie, Falla, Poulenc, Prokofiev and Constant Lambert. The principle choreographers for the company were Mikhail Fokine, Leonid Massine and George Balanchine.
In 1921 Diaghilev introduced Tchaikovsky’s Sleeping Beauty to western audiences at the Alhambra Theatre in London, with sets and costumes designed by Leon Bakst, who had worked with Diaghilev on some of the earliest productions of the Ballets Russes. After the death of Diaghilev in 1929 several new companies calling themselves “Ballets Russes” of one sort or another started up (see lots 154-157). Serge Lifar (1905-1986), dancer and choreographer, joined the Ballets Russes in 1923 and became premier danseur. In 1929 he was appointed director of the Paris Opéra Ballet.
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