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Le Carnaval


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Ballet in one act with choreography and libretto by Fokine, music by Schumann, orchestrated by Glazunov, Rimsky-Korsakov, Liadov, Tcherepnin, and Arensky, and designs by Bakst. Premiered 5 Mar. 1910, at the Pavlov Hall, St Petersburg, with Karsavina, Leontiev, Schollar, Nijinska, Nijinsky, and Meyerhold. The ballet was first seen at a charity ball in which the masked dancers of the Mariinsky Imperial Ballet had to appear anonymously because of contract restrictions. It is a series of dances for commedia dell'arte characters including Columbine, Harlequin, and Pierrot. The designs were inspired by the Viennese Biedermeyer period of 1840. Widely considered to be one of Fokine's early masterpieces, it was taken into the repertory of Diaghilev's Ballets Russes (who premiered it 20 May 1910 in Berlin) and was often revived by Fokine. In 1911, with new designs by Bakst, it entered the Mariinsky repertoire. Karsavina and Lopokova were famous Columbines, Nijinsky frequently danced Harlequin. It was revived for several British companies.

Subjects: Dance.


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