Interview with P.W. Manchester, 1975
NamesManchester, P. W. (Phyllis Winifred) (Interviewee)Vaughan, David, 1924- (Interviewer)Harris, Dale, 1928-1996 (Interviewer)
Dance Audio Archive
Dates / OriginDate Created: 1975-06-13Date Created: 1975-06-28
Library locationsJerome Robbins Dance DivisionShelf locator: *MGZTCO 3-943
TopicsLifar, Serge, 1905-1986Basil, W. deBaronova, IrinaShabelevsky, YurekDanilova, Alexandra, 1907-1997Massine, Leonide, 1896-1979Manchester, P. W.(Phyllis Winifred)Ballets russes du Col. W. de BasilBallets russes de Monte CarloChoreartium (Choreographic work : Massine)Présages (Choreographic work : Massine)Cotillon (Choreographic work : Balanchine)Gaîté parisienne (Choreographic work : Massine)Jeux d'enfants (Choreographic work : Massine)
NotesCitation/reference: For edited transcript of this interview see Ballet review, v. 6, nos. 3 & 4, 1977-78.Content: Title supplied by cataloger.Venue: Recorded by David Vaughan and Dale Harris 1975, June 19 and 28 New York (N.Y.)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.Acquisition: Gift Dale HarrisContent: Streaming audio file 1 (approximately 16 minutes). P.W. Manchester speaks with Dale Harris and David Vaughan about the influence on the ballet world of Serge Diaghilev's death; briefly, René Blum; more on the death of Diaghilev; early ballet audiences including at the London revival of Sacre du printemps [Rite of spring]; Olga Spessivtzeva; discussion of dancers who performed with the Diaghilev company [Ballets russes]; Diaghilev's plans for the 1930 season; the Camargo Society and other companies that appeared between 1929 and 1933 [ends abruptly but continues on streaming audio file 2].Content: Streaming audio file 2 (approximately 16 minutes). P.W. Manchester speaks with Dale Harris and David Vaughan about Col. W. de Basil and the first London season of his and René Blum's company [Ballets russes de Monte Carlo], including the composition of the audience, opening night, and the dancers; Ballet trente trois [Les Ballets 1933]; George Balanchine's ballets Cotillon and Concurrence; Irina Baronova; the level of technique of the company, including as compared to the Ballets russes [ends abruptly].Content: Streaming audio file 3 (approximately 48 minutes). [Begins abruptly.] P.W. Manchester speaks with Dale Harris and David Vaughan about the level of technique of the male dancers in the Ballet russes de Monte Carlo, including an anecdote about André Eglevsky; [Leonide Massine's] Choreartium and his Présages including a description of Nina Verchinina; Alexandra Danilova in Choreartium; Col. de Basil, Massine, and the "baby ballerinas:" Irina Baronova, Tatiana Riabouchinska, and Tamara Toumanova; costumes including the use of head pieces and wigs; Massine as a choreographer and as a dancer including how roles and dancers have changed since his time; Danilova as a dancer; Col. de Basil as a company director; the 1935 season of the Ballets russes de Monte Carlo, including the opening night performance of Aurora's wedding; Arthur Haskell's review of the performance; the revival of [Michel Fokine's] Schéhérazade; the 1936 season and Massine's Symphonie fantastique [ends abruptly but continues on streaming audio file 4].Content: Streaming audio file 4 (approximately 48 minutes). P.W. Manchester speaks with Dale Harris and David Vaughan about Leonide Massine's Jeux d'enfants; his Union Pacific [; or The golden spike] including Massine in the role of the bar man; his Jardin public; Col. de Basil's failure to discover new choreographers and designers of talent; David Lichine as a choreographer; René Blum and the Ballets russes de Monte Carlo; some of the dancers and the repertoire including Michel Fokine's L'épreuve d'amour; Massine's Gaîté parisienne; his Nobilissima visione (also know as St. Francis); the long decline of de Basil's company [Ballets russes du Col. de Basil]; Massine's Beau Danube; the Festival Ballet; the reliance of Massine's works on dancers of a specific type; her evaluation of Col. de Basil as a company director; Serge Diaghilev and the commissioning of George Balanchine's ballet The prodigal son; Serge Lifar including as a choreographer and as a dancer [ends abruptly].Content: Streaming audio file 5 (approximately 46 minutes). P.W. Manchester speaks with Dale Harris and David Vaughan about Serge Lifar as a dancer including his Siegfried and his Albrecht; his strong technique as a young dancer; steps Lifar danced in [George Balanchine's] Apollo that are rarely seen today; some of Lifar's roles; Mia Slavenska; briefly, Olga Morosova; Michel Fokine's ballet Paganini; Bronislava Nijinska's ballet Les cent baisers and Irina Baronova; the increase in the number of virtuoso male dancers since Diaghilev's time; Nana Gollner; George Balanchine's ballet Cotillon including its reception by the public; Balanchine's tendency to choreograph for his star dancers; Yurek Shabelevsky; revivals of Ballets russes repertoire by Col. de Basil's company including [Michel Fokine's] Prince Igor; Arthur Haskell as a historian and critic and as a fan; anecdotes about Cyril Beaumont and his descriptions of particular steps [ends abruptly but continues on streaming audio file 6].Content: Streaming audio file 6 (approximately 44 minutes). P.W. Manchester speaks with Dale Harris and David Vaughan about Michel Fokine's Les sylphides [original title: Shopeniana]; more on Col. de Basil's failure as an impresario; Bronislava Nijinska and some of her ballets; Tamara Toumanova and the other "baby ballerinas;" more on Yurek Shabelevsky, in particular his virtuosity; Leonide Massine's ballet Beach; the gradual decline in attendance at the London seasons of Col. de Basil's company; the rivalries among the various ballet companies in the 1930s and 1940s; briefly, Margot Fontyen and Alicia Markova; Balanchine's Gods go a-begging; ballet audiences including discussion of ticket prices [ends abruptly].
Physical DescriptionAudiocassetteExtent: 3 audiocassettes (approximately 3 hr., 30 min.) : quarter-track; 1.875 ipsSound quality is fair overall. The recording is marred by extraneous noise including "tape hiss."
DescriptionInterview with P.W. Manchester conducted by Dale Harris and David Vaughan, on 13 and 28 June 1975 in New York City.
Type of ResourceSound recording
IdentifiersRLIN/OCLC: 78174388NYPL catalog ID (B-number): b12118852Universal Unique Identifier (UUID): d81caab0-7960-0136-ed1a-2ba38f315ec3
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