Sergei Diaghilev (1872-1929)

These past three weeks on hiatus, I have also been reading Diaghilev (a life) by Sjeng Scheijen.

Sergei Diaghilev (1872-1929) is the historically famous impresario of the Ballets Russes. He was flamboyant and openly gay at a time when this was not generally accepted even in Paris in the 1920’s. Under his commission, the greatest of 20th century composers wrote ballets for him.
Stravinsky’s “Le Sacre,” Ravel’s “Daphnis and Chloe,” and more than a few ballets by Prokofiev were among those commissions.  A grand life led by a bigger than life character.

There is a movie from the 1980 that essayed Diaghilev’s work and relationship with the famous and tragic ballet star Vaslav Nijinsky. The movie is called “Nijinsky,” and stars Alan Bates as Sergei Diaghilev, and George de la Pena as Nijinsky.

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