WAINAO N°30 - FREE
WHY NOW? BECAUSE DANCE AND LIFE ARE LINKED. IF DANCING IS A WAY OF EXPRESS YOURSELF, THE DANCER CAN'T BE TOTALLY FREE IF THE PERSON BEHIND IS NOT 100% FREE. SO IT'S MORE MIKHAIL THE DANCER, THAT DEFECTED THAN MIKHAIL , THE MAN.
It's not a coincidence that Mikhail baryshnikov made the same choice that nureyev did years before..
“Dance is freedom!...if you're not 100% free, you're not 100% a dancer. That's why he leaves today.............that's why HE left. yesterday ”
“ Need no cell to put a dancer in a prison. Just tell him that he CAN NOT do one thing, no matter what...and he will fell like he's got a rope around the neck ”
June 29, 1974: Mikhail Baryshnikov, while on tour in Canada with the Mariinsky Ballet, defected, requesting political asylum in Toronto, 13 years after Rudolf Nureyev did the same thing.
Mikhail Nikolayevich Baryshnikov is a Latvian-born Russian and American dancer, choreographer, and actor. He is often cited as one of the greatest male ballet dancers in history. He began his ballet studies in Riga in 1960, at the age of 11. In 1964, he entered the Vaganova School, and won the top prize in the junior division . Despite his height, Baryshnikov quickly beacme famous. his stunning physical and technical skills as well as his actiing gifts made him one of the Soviet Union's leading ballet dancers. Mikhail was frustrated by the fact that the creative choreographers of the West coiuld not work with soviet dancers. Baryshnikov's main goal in leaving the Soviet Union was to work with these innovators.
On June 29, 1974, while on tour in Canada with the Mariinsky Ballet, Baryshnikov defected, requesting political asylum in Toronto, and joined the Royal Winnipeg Ballet. He wanted freedom for personal and artisitc reasons, and in Russia he was not provided with any sort of liberty. KGB minders often acted as his body guards and were present often but with support from his friends he finally decided to defect after the performance. KGB minders told him to board a bus that was taking all the dancers to a post performance party. At the same moment a bunch of admirers swamped him and begged for autographs, and he was able to sneak away through the people to an awating car parked near the theater. After, He announced to the dance world that he would not go back to the USSR just like NUREYEV few years before.
Mikhail was very often compared to Nureyev. They both had the same teacher, one of the greatest, Alexander Pushkin, the very one who had shaped the young Nureyev.
rudolf Nureyev was a Soviet ballet and contemporary dancer and choreographer. Named Lord of the Dance, Nureyev is widely regarded as the greatest male ballet dancer of his generation. Rudolf Nureyev was born in Siberia, Soviet Union . As a child he was soon noticed by teachers who encouraged him to train in Saint Petersburg. On a tour stop in Moscow, Nureyev auditioned for the Bolshoi ballet company and was accepted. 17, The ballet master Alexander Ivanovich Pushkin took an interest in him professionally and allowed Nureyev to live with him and his wife.
After his graduation in 1958, Nureyev joined the Kirov Ballet. He was given solo roles as a principal dancer and became one of the Soviet Union's best-known dancers. Nureyev was known as a rebel and had problems with authority, taht's the reason why the government did not like to see him abroad. However, in 1960, the French organizers urged Soviet authorities to let him dance in Paris, and he was allowed to go. Nureyev going out with foreigners and allegedly frequented gay bars in Paris. Nureyev knew that it will be seen as "having broken the rules".
He hadn’t plan to defect but He knew he would probably never going to be allowed to dance again outside the country.
On June 1961, the Mariinsky group had gathered at Le Bourget Airport in Paris to fly to London. Nureyev was told that he would have to return to Moscow, for a special performance in the Kremlin. Nureyev became suspicious and refused, he refused too when they said that his mother was ill and he had to go back see her. With the help of French police and a friend Nureyev escaped from his KGB minders and asked for asylum.
Nureyev's influence on the world of ballet was huge. 1/ male dancers were seen differentely and received more choreography. Nureyev displayed the idea that a man should dance as expressively as a ballerina. 2/ He broke some bareers between classical ballet and modern dance by performing both. Today dancers receive training in both styles, but back then, Nureyev was the first to excel in modern and classical dance.NUREYEV found the freedom he was looking for and he paved the way for Mikhail years later.
MIKHAIL and RUDOLF both wanted to experiment with new dance forms. "I decided from a very early age” that “dance was not just classical dance," Mikhail told Newsweek. "People say classical dance is the most refined and difficult thing to conquer. But for me that was about the end of it, because there was dance behind, in front, beside and about." said Mikhail.
They wanted to be modern and That eventually led to escape the Soviet repertoire but their defection helped dancers outside and inside because things have really change from that point!
To know more about the subject:
Russian-born king of dance honored in US". RT English. Archived from the original on November 17, 2015. Retrieved November 11, 2015.
Dance View, article on Mikhail Baryshnikov by Anna Kisselgoff, The New York Times, 28 October 1979.
Mikhail Baryshnikov defects from the Soviet Union". CBC News. June 30, 1974. Archived from the original on August 1, 2012. Retrieved June 28, 2011.
Biography of Mikhail Baryshnikov". John F. Kennedy Center for the Performing Arts. Archived from the original on January 3, 2008. Retrieved January 29, 2008.
Biographies of Mikhail Baryshnikov Dancers". www.biography-center.com. Archived from the original on March 4, 2016. Retrieved May 3, 2018.k
Mikhail Baryshnikov speaks about Rudolf Nureyev, interview by David Makhateli, D&D Art Productions .
Nureyev: Aspects of the Dancer. London: Faber.(1976).
The girl who led Nureyev to defect". The Australian. 14 December 2015.
Bridcut, John (17 September 2007). "The KGB's long war against Rudolf Nureyev". London: The Telegraph. Retrieved 22 May 2010.
Baryshnikov's tribute to Nureyev, the wording of Mikhail Baryshnikov's statement about Rudolf Nureyev, filmed by David Makhateli at Le Palais des Congrès in May 2013, site of the Nureyev foundation.
Sir John Tooley - Nureyev's influence on the development of Ballet in the West, official site of the Nureyev foundation.