Afternoon of a Faun: Tanaquil Le Clercq (2013)
Average Rating: 7.5/10
Reviews Counted: 9
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Average Rating: 7.2/10
Critic Reviews: 5
Fresh: 5 | Rotten: 0
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Average Rating: 5/5
User Ratings: 80
Of the great ballerinas, Tanaquil Le Clercq may have been the most transcendent. She mesmerized viewers and choreographers alike - her elongated, race-horse physique became the new prototype for the great George Balanchine. The muse to both Balanchine and Jerome Robbins, they loved her as a dancer and a woman. Balanchine married her and Robbins created his famous Afternoon of a Faun for Tanny. She was the foremost dancer of her day until it suddenly all stopped. At age 27, Tanny was struck down
Feb 5, 2014 Limited
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Buirski takes us on an emotional journey, although the start may seem slow to people unfamiliar with the ballet world or Le Clercq's story.
Classical dance great Jacques d'Amboise calls Tanaquil LeClercq's style a "path to heaven." And this lovely documentary by Nancy Buirski makes clear that he's right.
It offers hardheaded commentary about the rigors of a dancer's life and how everyone who chooses a dance career is aware of its brevity.
Even in a wheelchair, Le Clercq, who died in 2000 at age 71, commands authority with little more than her captivating, wicked smile.
[As Le Clercq falls to polio, director Nancy] Buirski digs up footage from the past of people encased in iron lungs or floating in nebulous wonderlands - outside-the-box visual cues that turn the film momentarily phantasmagoric.
"Afternoon of a Faun" brings to light Le Clercq's simultaneously depressing and inspirational story.
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