Ballet's Magic Kingdom Selected Writings on Dance in Russia, 1911-1925 Akim Volynsky, Stanley J. Rabinowitz, Stanley J. Rabinowitz, Stanley J. Rabinowitz, Stanley J. Rabinowitz
- Publication date:
- 02 Jan 2009
- 352 pages: 229 x 152 x 27mm
- 24 black & white illustrations
Akim Volynsky was a Russian literary critic, journalist, and art historian who became Saint Petersburg's liveliest and most prolific ballet critic in the early part of the twentieth century. This book, the first English edition of his provocative and influential writings, provides a striking look at life inside the world of Russian ballet at a crucial era in its history.Stanley Rabinowitz selects and translates forty of Volynsky's articles - vivid eyewitness accounts that sparkle with details about the careers and personalities of such dance luminaries as Anna Pavlova, Mikhail Fokine, Tamara Karsavina, and George Balanchine, at that time a young dancer in the Maryinsky company whose keen musical sense and creative interpretive power Volynsky was one of the first to recognize. Rabinowitz also translates Volynsky's magnum opus, "The Book of Exaltations", an elaborate meditation on classical dance technique that is at once a primer and an ideological treatise. Throughout his writings Volynsky emphasizes the spiritual and ethereal qualities of ballet, argues Rabinowitz in his critical introduction which sets Volynsky's life and work against the backdrop of the principal intellectual currents of the time.
Stanley J. Rabinowitz is Henry Steele Commager Professor and professor of Russian, Amherst College, and director of the Amherst Center for Russian Culture.
"Volynsky's detailed and perceptive reviews of dancers and dancing at the Maryinsky Theater--until now unavailable in English--are fascinating and illuminating; his legendary "Book of Exaltations" turns out to be both as tendentious and as brilliant as its reputation suggested it was. In tackling and bringing to fruition this important project, Stanley Rabinowitz has performed an immense service to the dance literature."--Robert Gottlieb, author of "George Balanchine: The Ballet Maker"