[Ballets Russes] Karsavina, Tamar. (1885-1978) [Danilova, Alexandra. (1903-1997)]
Theatre Street - INSCRIBED TO ALEXANDRA DANILOVA
London: William Heinemann Ltd. 1930. First edition.
An extraordinary association copy of the autobiography of Nijinsky's dance partner at the Ballets Russes, inscribed to the inheritor of her mantle, the great ballerina Alexandra Danilova. Her account of her early life at the Imperial Ballet School, and her subsequent career at the Marinsky Theatre and the Ballets Russes. 341 pp. Foreword by J. M. Barrie, plain photographic illustrations, publisher's green cloth, lettered gilt on the spine, inscribed on the front free endpage to Alexandra Danilova: "Dear Choura, whom I remember with love, Tamara." In good shape apart from a tear at the top of the spine and one photo plate page which is separated.
One of the most popular dancers of her time, Danilova was a star at St. Petersburg's Imperial Ballet, with the Ballets Russes under Sergei Diaghilev, and then with the Ballet Russe de Monto Carlo after Diaghilev's death. One of the greatest dancers of her time, she created numerous important Balanchine roles and was an important teacher at the School of American Ballet. When she died at the age of 93 in 1997, her will stipulated a number of bequests to individuals and institutions, and most of her correspondence, notebooks, artwork and memorabilia is now housed at the Library of Congress, Kent State University's Costume Museum, Ohio's Ursuline College and the New York Public Library. The present item is from the personal collection of her goddaughter, one of the ballerina's principal heirs.