American Masters Season 18

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Episode Info

A 1984 profile of choreographer extraordinaire George Balanchine (1904-83), whose wide variety of ballets "reinvented the past," says narrator Frank Langella. Included are lengthy clips from Balanchine ballets featuring such stalwarts of his New York City Ballet as Mikhail Baryshnikov, Suzanne Farrell, Peter Martins, Jacques D'Amboise and Tannaquil LeClerq (one of his wives). Balanchine is also seen dancing in "Dark Red Roses," a 1929 British film, and performing in a non-dancing role in a 1958 TV production of his classic staging of "The Nutcracker." And he's seen in a number of interviews. In one, Mr. B and his longtime collaborator, composer Igor Stravinsky, recall their mentor, choreographer Sergei Diaghilev. They're revelling in the memories. "Drink some more," says Stravinsky. "Let's be drunk."