Part of the new Eminent Lives series, this short biography captures the remarkable talent and spirit of the world's foremost contemporary choreographer and his legendary creative force.
Writing with wit, warmth and insight, Robert Gottlieb has created a loving portrait of a man he knew and admired, whose life story was almost as dramatic as some of the seminal performances he created for stage and screen. Founder of the School of American Ballet and the New York City Ballet, Balanchine came to America from Russia in the early 1930s and married five times. His forays into films and musicals, as well as his reinterpretations of ballet classics, revolutionised the look of modern dance to such an extent that he remains a paramount influence in the dance world.
Building on a biographical tradition that can be traced back to Aubrey's Brief Lives, Dr Johnson's Lives of the Poets and Lytton Strachey's Eminent Victorians, this exciting and ground breaking new series pairs great biographers, historians and novelists with iconic subjects, the writing bristling with original and distinctive points of view. 'To preserve a becoming brevity which excludes everything that is redundant and nothing that is significant,' wrote Strachey. 'That, surely, is the first duty of the biographer.'