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Holding On to the Air: An Autobiography [NOOK Book]

Overview

Suzanne Farrell, world-renowned ballerina, was one of George Balanchine's most celebrated muses and remains a legendary figure in the ballet world. This memoir, first published in 1990 and reissued with a new preface by the author, recounts Farrell's transformation from a young girl in Ohio dreaming of greatness to the realization of that dream on stages all over the world. Central to this transformation was her relationship with George Balanchine, who invited her to join the New York City Ballet in the fall of ...
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Holding On to the Air: An Autobiography

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Overview

Suzanne Farrell, world-renowned ballerina, was one of George Balanchine's most celebrated muses and remains a legendary figure in the ballet world. This memoir, first published in 1990 and reissued with a new preface by the author, recounts Farrell's transformation from a young girl in Ohio dreaming of greatness to the realization of that dream on stages all over the world. Central to this transformation was her relationship with George Balanchine, who invited her to join the New York City Ballet in the fall of 1961 and was in turn inspired by her unique combination of musical, physical, and dramatic gifts. He created masterpieces for her in which the limits of ballet technique were expanded to a degree not seen before. By the time she retired from the stage in 1989, Farrell had achieved a career that is without precedent in the history of ballet. One third of her repertory of more than 100 ballets were composed expressly for her by such notable choreographers as Balanchine, Jerome Robbins, and Maurice Bejart. Farrell recalls professional and personal attachments and their attendant controversies with a down-to-earth frankness and common sense that complements the glories and mysteries of her artistic achievement.
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Editorial Reviews

Publishers Weekly - Publisher's Weekly
Farrell, for years the chief muse of New York City Ballet cofounder and master choreographer George Balanchine, has led an extraordinary, frequently controversial life. Here with former NYCB dancer Bentley, she tells of it with humility, integrity, wit and sophistication. Farrell's is first of all a classically American story of a self-made woman: growing up a tomboy and a dance student in a broken home in Cincinnati, Ohio, she struck out at 15 for Manhattan with her mother and sisters on the chance that she might be accepted into the famed School of American Ballet. Discovered, aesthetically molded and eventually wooed by Russian-born Balanchine, she left NYCB in 1969 after it became apparent that her husband, dancer Paul Mejia, could have no career there so long as Mr. B.'s jealous moods prevailed. Farrell returned to the company in 1974 and retired in 1989 at the age of 44, one of the century's greatest ballerinas. The details of her decades as a dancer vie in interest here with those of her private self; she is both discreet and incisive in her views of on- and offstage events. Photos not seen by PW. BOMC alternate. (Sept.)
Library Journal
The dance world has been waiting to hear Farrell's story ever since this noted ballerina retired from the New York City Ballet in 1989, six years after the death of NYCB director George Balanchine, acknowledged choreographic genius of this century. As Balanchine's muse and center of his attentions, she collaborated with him in the creation of his most enduring ballets. Though she could not reciprocate in kind when he fell in love with her, she speaks with real feeling of their mutual devotion, which found its physical consummation in their work together at the ballet studio and in her performances for him onstage. The book's highest appeal will be to the dance audience; ballet students and fans will find it fascinating. It is essential for any performing arts collections. Previewed in Prepub Alert, LJ 5/15/90.-- Sheila Riley, Smithsonian, Washington, D.C.
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780813059327
  • Publisher: University Press of Florida
  • Publication date: 9/15/2002
  • Sold by: Barnes & Noble
  • Format: eBook
  • Pages: 352
  • Sales rank: 419,550
  • File size: 12 MB
  • Note: This product may take a few minutes to download.

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