(b Moscow, 3 Aug. 1912; d 27 Aug. 1982)
Soviet dancer, choreographer, and teacher. Born into a family of circus clowns, his talent for mime was noted when he became a student at the Moscow Ballet School. He graduated into the Bolshoi Ballet in 1930, becoming one of its most expressive character artists. During a period when the repertoire was dominated by dramatic works his gifts were much in demand, for example as Juliet's father in Lavrovsky's Romeo and Juliet. He also choreographed several ballets including The Little Stork (chor. with Popko and Pospekhin, mus. Klebanov, 1937) and The Little Humpbacked Horse (mus. Shchedrin, 1960). He retired from dancing in 1962 and became chief choreographer of the Red Army Song and Dance Ensemble until 1965. He was made Merited Artist of the Russian Federation in 1958.