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NYCB Vol. 5 No. 34 - Nutcracker

Alexandra Danilova as Sugar Plum Fairy. Photo by Maurice Seymour, 1945.

[34/50] Just like all the students at the Imperial Ballet School in St. Petersburg, Alexandra Danilova and George Balanchine performed in the original production of the Nutcracker with choreography by Lev Ivanov. Later, in the 1940s, while touring with the Ballet Russe de Monte Carlo, Danilova would perform as the Sugar Plum Fairy in the Nutcracker Suite. The second slide is footage from 1952 (just 2 years before Balanchine choreographed his production) of Danilova performing the variation at Jacob’s Pillow. Remember this is the Ivanov choreography, but you can see the passages that Balanchine references in his choreography! (pique arabesque, fouetté to passé & the pas de chat, soutenus on the diagonal that end up in Balanchine’s coda)

Alexandra Danilova. Recorded at Jacob’s Pillow, August 1952
Choreography: Ballet Russe de Monte Carlo version after Lev Ivanov

Music: added to film by John Sauer in 2003

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