xt7qjq0stw34_5831 https://exploreuk.uky.edu/dips/xt7qjq0stw34/data/mets.xml https://exploreuk.uky.edu/dips/xt7qjq0stw34/data/1997ms474.dao.xml unknown archival material 1997ms474 English University of Kentucky The physical rights to the materials in this collection are held by the University of Kentucky Special Collections Research Center.  Contact the Special Collections Research Center for information regarding rights and use of this collection. W. Hugh Peal manuscript collection Newspaper clippings from W. Hugh Peal journal, August 14, 1983 entry text 43.94 Cubic Feet 86 boxes, 4 oversize boxes, 22 items Poor-Good Peal accession no. 11453. Newspaper clippings from W. Hugh Peal journal, August 14, 1983 entry 2017 https://exploreuk.uky.edu/dips/xt7qjq0stw34/data/1997ms474/Box_88/Folder_5/Multipage44567.pdf 1983 1983 1983 section false xt7qjq0stw34_5831 xt7qjq0stw34  

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Nureyev Will Head
Paris Opera Ballet

Camera Press

For the first time in his career, he is undertaking the artistic

Continued from Page I

teachers: Violette Verdy. Jean-
Pierre Bonnefous, Toni Lander and
Stanley Williams. And there will be
guest artists. Seven couples. Who. I
don't know because there is such a
plethora of good dancers. It is hard to
decide and the scheduling is always

“I will dance myself. 40 performs
ances in Six months. But I will dance
only the Second or third perform-
ances after the openings. All this be.»
gins on Sept. 6, after I have finished
performing with the National Ballet
of Marseilles. and in Spnleto. Vienna
and London "

this, of course, was said before Mi
Nureyev was injured a few Weeks ago
during a performance of his version
of “Don Quixote" with the Boston
Ballet. He canceled his scheduled two
weeks of “ Don Quixote” appear-
ances with that company, forcing it,
in turn, to cancel its season. It turned
out that he had tom the inner calf
muscle of his right leg. and it was said
at the time that he would be unable to
dance for three weeks. Mr Nureyev
had expected to continue guest en-
gagements with other companies
while working in Paris, but whether
he will be able to continue to perform
at the rate he has maintained up to
now remains to be seen.


While his charisma remains intact.
the sheen is off the Nureyev tech-
nique. Underneath is the pure gold of
his talent and his training. He does
not defer to his age (45), nor simplify
his performance in any way. He takes
the full nsk of an unstable ending to
his turns. defies injury landing from
big jumps and, with magnificent and
unperturbed concentration, recovers
from a wavering balance with pan-
ache. He IS something of a Don Quix-
ote himself, challenging the ghost of
his past performances.

Now, for the first time in his career,
he is undertaking the artistic direc—
torship of a ballet company.

A big question is. how will the Paris
Opera Ballet take to Mr. Nureyev,
who has the reputation of not being al-
ways pleasant, cooperative or consid~

The Pans: Opera itself is regarded
_. a house of rumor, gossip and in‘
trigue. Furthermore, it is subject to
the political tides of the country.
Among other things, this means that
its directors, such as the head of the
ballet, seldom, if ever, have a tenure



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directorship of a ballet company.

that exceeds three years, regardless
of accomplishment Theoretically,
the head of the ballet could be reap—
potnted at the end of a three-year con‘
tract. In practice, this seems never to
happen As Miss Verdy put it recent?
ly, it is a matter of “political prefer‘
ences ruling the arts." By this she
meant that changes of administration
dictated by politics almost invariably
resulted in changes of artistic TPonn-

Another pOSSibly complicating fac-
fur in Mr, Nureyev's case is that a few
years ago, the Paris Opera Ballet re—
fused to come to the Metropolitan
iipera House for a longanticipated
summer engagement for whirh Mr
Nureyev had been engaged as the
star. The (umpanv‘s argument then
was that it had its own stars and that
Mr. Nureyev ShOUitl not be consrdered
the main attraction.

Mr. Nureyev’s recent statement
that he would now dance only “second
and third” performances in Paris can
be seen as an appreciation of the
merits of the company’s stars and a
concession to its previous argument.


Mr Nurevev is inhenting tne direc-
iorship oi the Paris Opera Ballet
from Rosella Hightower the Ameri-
can ballerina. Three years ago, she
herself inherited it from Violette
Verdy. The company Miss Hightower
took over consisted of 140 members
plus 15 leading dancers.

She found a highly paid but un-
happy group of dancers, only 50 to 70
of whom performed on a regular
basis. She divided the company into
three groups: one to perform the
traditional works and dance in the
operas; the second, young dancers
who performed the works of yuung
and relatively inexperienced chore-
ographers; and the third group, an
experimental ensemble directed by
Jacques Gamier. The leads danced
interchangeably in the groups.
Everyone worked Everyone seemed

But. according to Mr Nureyev,
changes are in store for the highly-
paid dancers of the Paris Opera. who
are government employees, live in
comfortable apartments, have cats,
are chic, and are secure With the
promise of pensions after 20 years of

The company of 140 dancers wtll
become 70," Mr. Nureyev said, but he
did not explain how he was going to
accomplish that. He did say, how-
ever, that he would retain the experi-
mental ensemble under Mr. Gamier.
And, he added, “I will have to rene-
gotiate the contracts of those who are
over the 20-year period of service but
who are still dancing well.

“But the best news of all 15 that the
building itself is being reconstructed,
with a new section which will house a
school and give us three studios. The
arrangement of the theater space was
so unconducive to work. so decentral-
ized, it was discouraging to choreog-
raphers to work there. But now,
everything will be efficient and

A new opera house projected for
1988, at the Place de la Bastille, will
leave the old house, with all its 19th-
century bRHE’Il” glories to» the dance
company. but if Mr Nureyei serves
for on!. mine years, he will not he
thereto e 1‘ joy that.

When Will we see the result of Ll’lc
Nureyev administration?

“I don't know," he replied. "Tout-
ing a company is making a statement
and it is too soon to malte- that state-
ment. But there will be performances
at the Palais des Sports, the Theatre
das Champs-Elysées, as well as at the

Is this new post for Mr. Nureyev a
step on the slippery rock of career
transition to administrator, while he
dances as long as he is able?

His reply took the form of an un~
characteristic and reverential
remembrante: "When Balanchine
rechoreographed 'Bourgeois Genti-
homme‘ for me." Mr. Nureyev said,
“he would always stand in the wings
and be present at every rehearsal. He
even went to the costume fittings with
me. 1 was so impressed with that. I
wanted him to sit down and rest. but
he wouldn’t. He was always with me,
always there. That’s what I want to
do Tobe there.” I