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l321385

How "famous" were these dancers/teachers?

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Nerina

:P It must have been a great honour to be taught by her, and to have such fond memories. I can only sit and admire photos of her! :)

 

The Ballerina Gallery - Danilova

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l321385

My teacher said that Ms. Danilova, in the middle of barre, would walk between the students and the barre, and push their hands away. She said it kept all the students on their toes... no pun intended. This happened once a week, or once a day , or once a month. The students NEVER knew when she would come. She would also sneak up on them from behind, so they didn't see her coming. Only the yelps from the other students would signal her "mad run" :thumbsup:

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Philip

I loved Periaslavics class! It was rumored that she had been captured by the Nazis and tortured so she could barely walk much less dance. If you took her class followed by Mr. Danilien's class, you might as well go home and crawl into a hot tube, soak, and then go to bed. Thank goodness for the Russians.

 

There is precious little biographic material on her. It would serve both ABT's and our memory of her if some research could be done.

 

Philip.

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Marga

Here is an obituary of Madame Pereyaslavec. It's on the site of the creator of the film "A Dancer's Life" (I have this video under the alternate title of "First Position"). Leon Danielian is a featured teacher on this documentary video, and, in addition to other remarkable footage, we are treated to his coaching 15 year old Fernando Bujones.

 

Valentina Pereyaslavec's obituary

 

Here is a clip of her teaching (a third of the way into the clip). Note her trademark voice as well as the presence of Nureyev in her class:

Pereyaslavec teaching

 

Leon Danielian teaching

 

Danielian coaching Bujones (midway through clip). Clip begins with Nureyev in Pereyaslavec's class

 

Here, Nureyev is quoted on the influence of Pereyaslavec:

 

"
Valentina Pereyaslavec is a great teacher. I was lucky to fall into her hands when I came from Russia where things were slightly disorganized. The discipline in her class helps to focus on one's work. Her classes give fantastic strength. My work with her helps me to maintain myself so well.

 

I brought Margot (Fonteyn) to her class. She was apprehensive. Nevertheless, since the first lesson, she never misses the opportunity to take her class. Often, Margot makes a special stopover in New York on her way to Australia or Panama in order to take Mme. Pereyaslavec's class. Margot says that if you survive Madame's barre, you can survive anything.

 

Although she is stern and demanding, after class she turns into the softest person, like a mother. In class she is possessed by the muse, a priestess of dance."

Rudolf Nureyev

 

(For me, a high point of the film is seeing my old character teacher, Yurek Lazowsky, coaching Petrouchka.)

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vagansmom

My daughter inherited a large collection of ballet books, and among them was Igor Schwezoff's autobiography Borzoi. He wrote it entirely himself, and won an award for it. Shwezoff was in the very first group of Russian dancers who defected after the Russian Revolution; it's an amazing story. If you can get hold of his book, please do read it - what a history!

 

In the meantime, here's an article about him: Igor Schwezoff

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Gina Ness

I hadn't seen this thread before. I studied with both Mr. Vilzak and Madame Schollar at SFB school. I don't think Mr. Vilzak taught at SAB, but I don't know this with absolute certainty. I don't think so, though...They were both amazing teachers. Especially, Mr. Vilzak... :D I learned many variations from Madame Schollar which I have passed on to many of my students. Marga, there is a great photo of Pereyaslavec with Nureyev, Fonteyn, Bruhn and Fracci....I believe it was featured in a Dance Magazine.

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Marga

Thank you, Jacki, for the link to the Igor Schwezoff article. His is an absolutely fascinating story! Many, many thanks!

 

And, thanks, Gina, for the mention of the photo in Dance. I have almost all the Dance Magazines ever published, so I'll take a look through them for the picture.

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Serendipity
My teacher said that Ms. Danilova, in the middle of barre, would walk between the students and the barre, and push their hands away. She said it kept all the students on their toes... no pun intended. This happened once a week, or once a day , or once a month. The students NEVER knew when she would come. She would also sneak up on them from behind, so they didn't see her coming. Only the yelps from the other students would signal her "mad run" :)

 

LOL! My university ballet teacher obviously took a page from Danilova's book, as she would do the same thing. Poor teacher - sometimes she would meet with a thud in the middle of her chest from a hand that was gripping FAR too much! :-)

 

 

I came across the Leon Danielian film a year or so ago while looking for something else and was shocked. I studied with him at ABT one summer when I was about 16 - never knew he was so famous, at the time. I was only told he was one of the foremost ballet masters in the world.

 

I recall being corrected by him several times, in a class of what appeared to me to be about 100 students, and being upset about it. That was until another student came to me in the dressing room and told me how lucky I was to have been noticed in such a large class. I've taken that observation to heart ever since. Amazing, isn't it, the things one remembers...

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Mme. Hermine

Gina has heard this story but I thought I would inject it here.

 

While living in San Francisco, I was waiting outside a studio in the SFB building for a dancer who was rehearsing the Sleeping Beauty pas de deux inside. It was just down the hall from where Mr. Vilzak's office was. No one else was around at the time. I saw Mr. Vilzak come out of his office, and at that moment I was just kind of sitting there moving my arms around (figured I wasn't being watched) to the music. Vilzak came up to me and asked me "you have seen this pas deux?" I said yes. "Who did you see?" I told him. He nodded and then said brightly, "Ah! But you didn't see me!"

 

:)

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