February 13, 1893 - November 25, 1970
Pierre Vladimiroff (born Pyotr Nikolayevich Vladimirov, was a prominent Russian-American dancer and teacher. One of those artist who may not be the stars under the spotlight, but make an enormous contribution to the development of their art by helping young talents grow and find strength to surpass their teachers.
Pierre Vladimiroff – The Quiet Genius of Ballet
Pyotr Nikolayevich Vladimirov was born in Gatchina, then Russian Empire. He was graduated from the famous Imperial Ballet School in 1911, receiving the title of the first dancer four years later.
He remained a member of the Imperial Ballet company until 1918, when the Civil war the Soviet's strong dislike for what was then considered by the Bolsheviks to be "attributes and symbols of the old Tsarist regime" made it impossible for Pierre to continue at the company...
In 1920, the life under the new regime became unbearable for the artist, so he and his later wife, ballerina Felia Doubrovska, decided to emigrate to Europe, to France with its large Russian emigre community.
There they both joined Diaghilev's popular Ballets Russes, a safe haven for talents, that helped many dancers from the former Russian empire find a new path to success and fame in the West. Soon Vladimiroff danced all the roles of the famous Vaslav Nijinsky, who had left the company in 1917!
George Balanchine, the famous ballet master, in a private conversation once said that in classical ballet Vladimiroff surpassed Nijinsky, and at least rivaled the star when it came to technique, performing unimaginable pirouettes.
Later, Pierre joined the Mordkin Ballet, as well as Anna Pavlova's dancing company on the star's last international tour, becoming her last partner before her death in 1931.
From the 30s to the late 60s, Vladimiroff dedicated his time to training ballet dancers at the newly founded School of American Ballet in New York. Due to his experience and physique, he was invited to be the first teacher of male students at the school.
During his long years at the school, he is credited with helping Todd Bolender, John Taras, Willam Christensen, William Dollar, Tanaquil LeClercq, Maria Tallchief and many others on their path to fame and recognition in the ballet world.
The Oxford Dictionary of Dance (2 ed.)
I Was a Dancer – Jacques D'Amboise
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