Abbé Perrin (Director of...
Dancer and ballet director
Violette Verdy began her career at the Ballets des Champs-Élysées (1945-1948) then performed with the Ballets de Marigny in Paris (1952) and went on to join Roland Petit at the Ballets de Paris (1953-1954) where she was cast as the Fiancée in his 1953 ballet, The Wolf. As a soloist for the London Festival Ballet (1954-1955), she made guest appearances with several companies including the American Ballet Theatre, ultimately making a career for herself at the New York City Ballet (1958-1976).
And it was in the United States where she truly earned fame, embodying the archetypal French dancer for American audiences. Her arresting charm and her innate vivacity won over George Balanchine who created Tchaikovsky-Pas de deux (1960), La Source (1968) and Sonatine (1975) for her and in her honour.
She was cast in the choreographer’s entire repertoire as well as in ballets by Jerome Robbins (Dances at a Gathering, 1969 and In the Night, 1970). On her return to France, she was appointed director of the Paris Opera Ballet School—a position she would hold from 1977 to 1980.
She then became the co-director of the Boston Ballet until 1983. An associate professor at the NYCB from 1984, she also taught at the School of American Ballet as well as in the numerous companies that never ceased to invite her. She returned to the Paris Opera Ballet School in 1993 to pass on her Diverdymento to the pupils there, and then again in 2012 to impart her Variations to a new generation.
Partners of the Paris Opera’s 350th anniversary
Sponsor of Crystal Pite's production
Sponsor of Opera's Battle
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With the generous support of
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Sponsor of the Emperor box restoration
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Institutions associated with the 350th anniversary