Dame Margot Fonteyn is easily recognizable as one of the world’s most unparalleled classical dance ballerinas of all time, along with that of her lifelong career partner, the incomparable Rudolf Nureyev.
Ballerina collection composed by 4 ethereal and hauntingly beautiful shades is inspired by the legendary Margot Fonteyn and her timeless grace.
Born Margaret Evelyn Hookham on May 18, 1919 to a British father and half-Irish half-Brazilian mother, she quickly rose through the ranks of the Royal Ballet School of London where by the age of 20 she had already assumed 3 leads. In 1956 she was made a Dame of the Order of the British Empire, eventually being appointed Prima Ballerina Assoluta by Queen Elizabeth II.
If Margot had a signature role, it may have been her interpretation of Aurora in Sleeping Beauty where her performance of the famous Rose Adagio brought audiences to their feet.
One of the most famous solos in classic ballet is the Rose Adagio. Technically it is not a solo, as Aurora dances with four suitors, yet it is considered to be such because she does the most difficult dancing. In this tour de force the ballerina must execute very exacting balance moves while changing partners. Each pass becomes exceedingly more difficult beginning with leg extensions and balancing arabesques. The penultimate test comes when Aurora balanced en pointe in an arabesque is turned 360 degrees by each suitor. In between the handoffs she raises both arms in fifth position (overhead) before she takes the next suitor's hand and should remain in perfect balance as solid as a rock.
In 1961 when Margot Fonteyn met then-unknown Russian dancer Rudolf Nureyev, their rapport was instantaneous and their dance partnership has now become legendary, spanning the rest of their careers with numerous unforgettable performances. In 1962, their first full-length ballet together, Giselle, received 30 curtain calls – an unprecedented achievement.
He said to her:
"At the end of 'Lac des Cygnes' when she left the stage in her great white tutu I would have followed her to the end of the world."
Text kindly provided by Eugenia Ragas