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Deanne Bergsma at 80


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Someone mentioned Deanne Bergsma yesterday and looking at her Wikipedia entry I noticed that today is her 80th birthday.

 

It's more than 40 years since she retired from the Royal Ballet, but for me she is still unsurpassed in so many of her roles - Lilac Fairy, Myrthe, Lady Mary Lygon (her created role in Enigma Variations), the Tsarevna in Firebird, the third shade In Bayadere (that's as in Nureyev's production - it's the one with the cabrioles)...  And in my patchwork Swan Lake (all the best bits I've seen, sewn together) she does Odette's exit at the end of Act 2, and probably Siegfried's mother as well.

 

A lovely dancer, in every respect.

 

 

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3 hours ago, Jeannette said:

Lovely Sylvia, too, captured on film in rehearsals. Happy birthday, Ms Bergsma! 🎂 

 

One great reason to visit the Robbins Collection at the NYPL -

https://digitalcollections.nypl.org/collections/edme-wood-video-archive#/?tab=about&scroll=20

 

 

 

 

A mouthwatering collection indeed. A shame they are not available to watch from home. 

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I never saw Deanne Bergsma dance live (she was a bit before my time), but I've adored seeing her photos in the ROH programmes over the years as she always looks so dynamic; my favourite is the Siren from Balanchine's Prodigal Son opposite Nureyev.

Many happy returns of the day!

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The first performance of the Royal Ballet I ever saw was a Sleeping Beauty at the Met with Bergsma dancing the Lilac Fairy. It was also my first full-length Sleeping Beauty in the theater--I was about 9--and I can't say I have very concrete memories of the performance itself. But I do have very concrete memories of how absolutely enchanted I was by Bergsma's performance. I just ADORED her Lilac Fairy and later commented very earnestly to my mother that every ballerina must want to dance the Lilac Fairy as much as they wanted to dance Aurora.  Unfortunately, that is the only time I saw her dance.

 

Many happy returns indeed!

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