Interview with Violetta Elvin, 1978
NamesElvin, Violetta Prokhorova (Interviewee)Harris, Dale, 1928-1996 (Interviewer)
Dance Audio Archive
Dates / OriginDate Created: 1978-08-09 - 1978-08-11
Library locationsJerome Robbins Dance DivisionShelf locator: *MGZTCO 3-964
TopicsAshton, Frederick, 1904-1988Shearer, Moira, 1926-2006Ulanova, Galina Sergeevna, 1910-1998Fonteyn, Margot, 1919-1991Elvin, Violetta ProkhorovaNureyev, Rudolf, 1938-1993Leningradskiĭ gosudarstvennyĭ akademicheskiĭ teatr opery i baleta imeni S.M. KirovaSadler's Wells BalletRoyal BalletBolʹshoĭ teatr SSSR. BaletNutcracker (Choreographic work : Grigorovich, after Ivanov)Dance criticismBallet dancingBallet -- NationalismBallet -- Russia (Federation) -- Moscow (Russia) -- 1917-1949Audiotapes -- Elvin, Violetta Prokhorova
NotesCitation/reference: For transcript of interview see: *MGZMT 3-964.Content: Title supplied by cataloger.Venue: Recorded by Dale Harris 1978 Naples (Italy)Funding: The conservation and cataloging of this recording was made possible in part by the New York State Council on the Arts with the support of Governor Andrew Cuomo and the New York State Legislature. The support of the National Endowment for the Arts is also gratefully acknowledged.Content: Streaming audio file 1 (approximately 32 minutes). August 9, 1978. Violetta Elvin speaks with Dale Harris about visiting [Natalia] Goncharova in her studio; her teachers; her decision not to teach; Galina Ulanova including as compared to [Marina] Semyonova; examples of influences to which different dancers were subject [ends abruptly but continues on streaming audio file 2].Content: Streaming audio file 2 (approximately 32 minutes). Violetta Elvin speaks with Dale Harris about perceived differences in style between the Kirov Ballet Company [now the Maryinsky Ballet] dancers and those of the Bolshoi Ballet [Bolʹshoĭ teatr SSSR. Balet]; Mikhail Baryshnikov; Rudolf Nureyev; Moira Shearer; Ninette de Valois and the transformation of the Royal Ballet from an English company to a British company [ends abruptly].Content: Streaming audio file 3 (approximately 47 minutes). August 10, 1978. Violetta Elvin speaks with Dale Harris about her training; evacuating from Moscow to Tashkent during World War II; joining the Bolshoi Ballet company in 1943; how different styles of ballet have influenced each other; joining the Sadler's Wells Ballet [now the Royal Ballet]; her time at the Bolshoi Ballet including her role as one of three swans in Act II of Swan lake; the Stanislavski Theater; the trend toward using less mime; [Yuri] Grigorovich's Nutcracker [ends abruptly but continues on streaming audio file 4].Content: Streaming audio file 4 (approximately 47 minutes). Violetta Elvin speaks with Dale Harris about the relationship between painting and mime; more on [Yuri] Grigorovich's Nutcracker including the set; possible reasons for Galina Ulanova's move from Leningrad [now St. Petersburg] to Moscow; Elivn's debut with Sadler's Wells Ballet; the importance of support and counseling; her thoughts on dance critics; hierarchy in ballet companies in the United States, England, and the [former] Soviet Union; the audience's desire for star performers [ends abruptly].Content: Streaming audio file 5 (approximately 48 minutes). Violetta Elvin speaks with Dale Harris about Leonide Massine, including an anecdote about their chance meeting in Italy; working with Massine including in his Petrouchka (after Fokine) at La Scala [Teatro alla Scala] and his Three-cornered hat (original title: Tricorne); Margot Fonteyn, in particular, in the later years of her career; working with Frederick Ashton including discussion of his Cinderella; the Sadler's Wells Theatre; the effective use of large numbers of people on stage; Ninette de Valois's choreography as relatively small in scale [ends abruptly].Content: Streaming audio file 6 (approximately 47 minutes). August 11, 1978. Violetta Elvin speaks with Dale Harris about Ninette de Valois's choreography including her The rake's progress, Checkmate, and Don Quixote; Robert Helpmann; more on Frederick Ashton's Cinderella; Vera Volkova; the effects of reviews;Content: Streaming audio file 7 (approximately 48 minutes). Violetta Elvin speaks with Dale Harris about dancing in [George Balanchine's] Ballet Imperial; the unequal distribution of leading roles and "first nights" at Sadler's Wells Ballet including its negative effect on the company; touring in the United States including the most recent tour; Roland Petit and his work Ballabile; dancing in a pantomime with Anton Dolin [ends abruptly but continues on streaming audio file 8].Content: Streaming audio file 8 (approximately 37 minutes). Violetta Elvin continues to speak with Dale Harris about dancing in a pantomime; studying with Olga Preobrajenska; her last performance with the Sadler's Wells Ballet including an anecdote about herself and Margot Fonteyn; David Blair; an anecdote about Rudolf Nureyev.
Physical DescriptionAudiocassetteExtent: 4 audiocassettes (approximately 5 hr., 38 min.) : quarter-track; 1.875 ipsSound quality is fair. The recording is marred by extraneous noise.
DescriptionInterview with Violetta Elvin conducted by Dale Harris on August 9, 10, and 11, 1978, in Naples, Italy, for the Oral History Project of The New York Public Library for the Performing Arts, Jerome Robbins Dance Division.
Type of ResourceSound recording
IdentifiersRLIN/OCLC: 77623223NYPL catalog ID (B-number): b12118822Universal Unique Identifier (UUID): eb8dd1f0-7960-0136-e9a7-1f53c3d7cb27
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