George Balanchine: Biography, Bibliography, and more About the Foundation Foundation Projects Balanchine Catalogue News & Events Contact Us

View Record
 

Search the Catalogue
Introduction to the Database


Preface by Lincoln Kirstein
Background

Chronology: Life and Works
Roles Performed By Balanchine

Chronological Title List
Titles By Category

Festivals Directed By Balanchine
Bibliography
Filmography
Videography

Itineraries Undertaken by
Balanchine's American
Companies

Research Resources
Credits
Acknowledgments


Contact Us: information@balanchine.org


 

52. LE CHANT DU ROSSIGNOL (Also called THE SONG OF THE NIGHTINGALE)


Ballet in One Act, after Hans Christian Andersen's Fairy Tale


Music: By Igor Stravinsky (symphonic poem for orchestra in three parts, 1917; adapted from his 1913 opera Le Rossignol ).

Choreography: Originally choreographed by Léonide Massine (1920); rechoreographed by George Balanchine.

Production: Curtain, scenery, and costumes by Henri Matisse (from the 1920 production).

Premiere: June 17, 1925, Diaghilev's Ballets Russes, Théâtre Gaîeté Lyrique, Paris. Conductor: Marc-César Scotto.

Cast: Nightingale, Alicia Markova; Death, Lydia Sokolova; Emperor, Serge Grigoriev; Mechanical Nightingale, George Balanchine; Japanese Maestro, Nicolas Kremnev; 16 Ladies of the Court; 6 Warriors; 6 Mandarins; 4 Chamberlains.

Note: Stravinsky prefixed a ballet scenario to the score based on quotations from Andersen, with the following headings: 1. The Fête in the Emperor of China's Palace; 2. The Two Nightingales; 3. Illness and Recovery of the Emperor of China.
Balanchine's first choreography for performance in the regular seasons of Diaghilev's Ballets Russes, and his first choreography in the West to music by Stravinsky; in Russia he had choreographed Ragtime [3], and rehearsed Pulcinella [35]. On one occasion, when Markova was ill, Balanchine danced the role of the Nightingale.

Reconstruction: Les Ballets de Monte Carlo, 2000.

Archival Video: George Balanchine Foundation Archive of Lost Choreography (Nightingale's solo, excerpts of pas de deux with Death), 1996.

Stagings:    hide...

1999   Les Ballets de Monte-Carlo

2002   Europa Danse

2006   Kansas City Ballet

The George Balanchine Foundation Logo