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Like a Bomb Going OffLeonid Yakobson and Ballet as Resistance in Soviet Russia$
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Janice Ross

Print publication date: 2015

Print ISBN-13: 9780300207637

Published to Yale Scholarship Online: May 2015

DOI: 10.12987/yale/9780300207637.001.0001

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What Is to Be Done with Ballet?

What Is to Be Done with Ballet?

Chapter:
(p.83) Three What Is to Be Done with Ballet?
Source:
Like a Bomb Going Off
Author(s):

Janice Ross

Publisher:
Yale University Press
DOI:10.12987/yale/9780300207637.003.0004

This chapter recalls how ballet was used as a political instrument at the end of the Bolshevik Revolution. Yakobson became a critic and then a supporter of ballet despite Stalin's purges. The guiding motto for art at that time was that it should be natural in form and socialist in content. Yakobson learned from his experience performing his first major work “The Golden Age,” that working from a clearly written plot helped ease the anxieties regarding censorship. He became more confident in developing his art. He created dances that expressed human emotions and social exigencies. Also, as a choreographer, he learned about making and unmaking his art under Soviet rule. He used ballet to show nationality, identity, and ethnicity through his performances.

Keywords:   Bolshevik Revolution, The Golden Age, Soviet rule, nationality, identity, ethnicity

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