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Fonteyn, Margot (1919-1991)

Fonteyn, Margot (1919-1991)

Prima ballerina of the British Royal Ballet for over forty years, Margot Fonteyn was one of greatest dramatic dancers of the twentieth century. Fonteyn was the first ballerina trained in a British school and company to achieve international stature. Artistic partnerships were integral to her career; her forty-year collaboration with Frederick Ashton was the longest between a ballerina and choreographer in dance history. As she prepared to retire at age 43 in 1962, her career was revitalized by her partnership with Rudolf Nureyev, who, at age 24, had just defected from the Soviet Union. "It was an artistic love affair conducted in public" said dance critic Clement Crisp. Fonteyn's career was unusually long for a ballet dancer and she continued to perform until her mid-sixties.

—Jeffrey Escoffier

Further Reading:

An Evening with the Royal Ballet, with Rudolf Nureyev and Margot Fonteyn (film). Kultur International Films.

Macauley, Alastair. Margot Fonteyn, London, Sutton Publishing, 1998.

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