Lev Ivanov

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Related to Lev Ivanov: George Balanchine, Marius Petipa
The following article is from The Great Soviet Encyclopedia (1979). It might be outdated or ideologically biased.

Ivanov, Lev Ivanovich


Born Feb. 18 (Mar. 2), 1834, in Moscow; died Dec. 11 (24), 1901, in St. Petersburg. Russian ballet dancer and choreographer.

Upon graduating from the St. Petersburg Theatrical School in 1852, Ivanov was accepted into the Imperial Ballet, where he became premier danseur in 1869. He was the first to perform the roles of Gyges in Pugni’s Le Roi Candaule and Basil and Solor in Minkus’ Don Quixote and La Bayadere. In 1885 he became assistant balletmaster of the Mariinskii Theater, working with M.I. Petipa. In 1887, Ivanov staged the ballets The Enchanted Forest by Drigo and The Tulip of Harlem by Schell in the Romantic tradition. Exceptional musicality allowed him to create outstanding models of the symphonic treatment of the dance, both character (the Polovetsian dances in Borodin’s opera Prince Igor, 1890) and classical (dance of the snowflakes in The Nutcracker, 1892, and Acts II and IV in Swan Lake, 1895, both by Tchaikovsky). The poetic quality of the characters was embodied by Ivanov in perfect choreographic form. His work represents the highest point of the academic style in the history of Russian ballet.


Krasovskaia, V. Russkii baletnyi teatr vtoroi poloviny XIX veka. Leningrad-Moscow, 1963. Pages 337–401.


The Great Soviet Encyclopedia, 3rd Edition (1970-1979). © 2010 The Gale Group, Inc. All rights reserved.
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References in periodicals archive ?
The story was the inspiration for the ballet created by the composer Tchaikovsky and by choreographers Marius Petipa and Lev Ivanov. It remains a ballet favourite worldwide.
Swan Lake, with choreography by Marius Petipa and Lev Ivanov, had been around for only eighteen years when Balanchine joined the Imperial Ballet School in 1913.
With its festive period setting, dancing snowflakes and enchanting stage magic, Lev Ivanov's 1892 ballet has become the best way to celebrate Christmas, or keep it alive in this case.
For this production, Nicolas and Greg used the choreography by Marias Petipa and Lev Ivanov, devised more than 100 years ago for the Russian Imperial Ballet.
The choreography set by Lev Ivanov for the premiere, at the Marriinsky Theatre, St Petersburg, in 1919, was retained in every detail for many years.
By 1895 it was restaged by choreographers Lev Ivanov and Marius Petipa in St Petersburg and turned into the successful ballet drama we know today.
But The Nutcracker, when so very little of the original Lev Ivanov choreography has been preserved, strikes me as fairer game.
This interpretation of the ballet, by producer Anthony Dowell, uses classical choreography created by Marius Petipa and Lev Ivanov for the ballet's revised 1895 version.
And most of all, the choreography, laid out more than 100 years ago by Marius Petipa and Lev Ivanov for the Russian Imperial Ballet.
Alas, the original 19th century choreography by Marius Petipa and Lev Ivanov leaves the young Moldovan with little to do for the first two acts but walk around gazing soulfully skywards.