Elena Andreyanova


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(b St Petersburg, 13 Jul. 1819; d Paris, 26 Oct. 1857)

Russian dancer. She studied at the Imperial Theatre School, St Petersburg, graduating into the Bolshoi Theatre, St Petersburg, in 1837 where she danced until 1855. An expressive mime, equally gifted in classical and character dances, she was the first Russian to dance Giselle (18 Dec. 1842). She attracted some criticism over the favouritism shown her by Aleksandr Gedeonov, director of the Imperial Theatres. But Petipa chose her as his partner in Paquita which he staged for his own debut in 1847 and she created roles in several ballets including Perrot's La Filleule des fées (1850), The Naiad and the Fisherman (1851), and Gazelda (1853). She was also one of the first Russian dancers to perform abroad, for example in Hamburg, London, Paris, and Milan in 1845, and in London again in 1852. She studied for a while with Blasis. Between 1852 and 1855 she toured Russia with a group of Imperial dancers. In 1855 she retired to Paris.

Subjects: Dance.

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