Solo Works

Debut at the Opera

Music by: Clement Delibes
Scored and Played by: Allen Krantz
Choreography by: Agnes DeMille
Reconstructed by: Janet Eilber
Costumes by: Kenneth Busbin
Lighting by: Tricia Toliver

A Dance after the Paintings of Degas first performed by Agnes de Mille in January, 1928 at the Republic Theater, New York City

Scene: Ida Nevasayneva, backstage and in the wings of the Paris Opera, moments before her debut, many many years ago… just before the curtain rises. The overture is on…

Agnes de Mille achieved fame both as a dancer and choreographer. A founding member of American Ballet Theatre, counted among her masterpieces are Rodeo, in which she danced garnering critical acclaim and twenty-two curtain calls on its opening night with the Ballet Russe de Monte Carlo, Fall River Legend, Three Virgins and a Devil, and The Informer.

Miss de Mille changed the face of American musical theatre some fifty years ago with her choreography for Oklahoma which has enjoyed many hit revivals, most recently in 1980 at the Palace Theater. Miss de Mille also did the choreography for the world-famous film version of the show. Carousel was, and is, another legendary hit for her. Many other memorable Broadway musicals followed including One Touch of Venus, Brigadoon, Paint Your Wagon, Bloomer Girl, and Gentlemen Prefer Blondes. In addition to choreographing, Miss de Mille directed Allegro, The Rape Of Lucretia, and Out Of This World.

Miss de Mille is the proud winner of many awards among which are two “Tony” Awards, three NY Drama Critics’ Circle Awards, four Donaldson Awards, the Handel Medallion, and the prestigious Kennedy Center Honors.

Miss de Mille enjoyed considerable success as a television figure, particularly with an Omnibus series on ballet. She was the subject of the Emmy winning documentary entitled Agnes, The Indomitable de Mille produced by Dance In America/Public Television.

Miss de Mille has authored numerous books, among them the much acclaimed biography of her contemporary and friend of several decades, the late Martha Graham. Other books include “Dance to the Piper,” “Lizzie Borden: Dance of Death,” and “Portrait Gallery.” She died in 1993. Her works continue to be performed in major dance companies worldwide.

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