On one of our evenings in Paris, my mom and I went to the Théâtre des Champs-Élysées for the ballet, “Les Saisons Russes du XXIeme Siecle.” The Ballet Russes was a ballet company from Russia that performed between 1909 and 1929 in many countries, directed by Sergei Diaghilev. Today, it is regarded as one of the greatest ballet companies of the 20th century. Diaghilev, “worked with avant-garde composers and artists, putting composers like Ravel, Debussy and Stravinsky together with designers such as Bakst and Goncharova or the emerging artists like Picasso and Matisse. Diaghilev made a major contribution to the introduction of Modernism and though his initiatives were succeeded by new trends and styles, no one single person has changed the course of art so radically since his time” (Eno Productions).
As part of this production at the Théâtre des Champs-Élysées, the ballet company performed short pieces from three original Diaghilev ballets, Petrouchka(created in 1911 with music by Igor Stravinksi and choreography by Michel Fokin), Les Sylphides (created in 1909 with music by Frederic Chopin and choreography by Michel Fokin) and Les Danses Polovtsiennes, an extract from the popular opera, Le Prince Igor (created in 1890 with music by Alexander Borodin and choreography by Michel Fokin). My favorite was Les Sylphides, and I found a video of this ballet performed by Margot Fonteyn and Rudolf Nureyev on Youtube (see parts 1, 2 and 3).
And how about ending your night with a glimpse of the glittering Tour Eiffel?
It was a wonderfully cultural Parisian-French evening 🙂