Laurent Novikoff (1888-1956)

Many of the dancers who performed with the Ballets Russes did not become household names, but I have always said that every dancer who has appeared on a stage has in some way shaped the dance we enjoy today. It is hard to say why some names are remembered and others are lost in the archives. Perhaps it helps if you were involved in some scandal, or you died in a bizarre way!

Laurent Novikoff (1888-1956) graduated from Moscow's Bolshoi Ballet School in 1906. He danced alternatively between Diaghilev (1909 and 1919-1921) and Pavlova's company (1911-1914 and 1921-1928). Novikoff was ballet master at the Chicago Opera from 1919-1933, and the Metropolitan Opera in New York from 1941-1945.

(First published August 1995)

Don't be so hard on yourself -- that is my job.