Memories and interviews

  LA BAYADERE,

ALPHA AND OMEGA OF HIS DESTINY
 

Nureyev, whose name means "ray of light", was indeed this luminous beacon guiding the youngest dancers, this imperious leading light sweeping across classical and modern choreographic repertoires, this persistent flame burning and being consumed with passion for ballet.Rudolf Nureyev was first revealed to the world of ballet lovers, one May evening in 1961 at the Paris Opera.

Appearing in the role of Solor in the "Kingdom of the Shades" scene which was being performed for the first time in Western Europe, he materialized, in his haughty purity, like a young god, brilliantly combining cat-like sensuality with incredible stylistic beauty. It was on the same stage of the Palais Garnier, more than thirty years later in October 1992 that, coming full circle, he finally presented his production of La Bayadère.

Between the beginning and the end of his destiny, he lived an exemplary trajectory sought after since childhood, experiencing a dazzling rise to fame and a long sojourn among the stars.
Josseline Le Bourhis

Photo : Francette Levieux