As Jean Cocteau coined it, "Lifar has kept Diaghilev's secret into his heart." Indeed, Diaghilev took the young dancer under his wing and offered him a place at the Ballets Russes, of which Lifar became the principal dancer in 1925.
As ballet master of the Paris Opera from 1930 to 1958, Serge Lifar shook up the old Parisian institution and dedicated himself to level up the artistic standards. The movie director Dominique Delouche has encountered the principal dancers at the Paris Opera during rehearsal sessions and has dug out archival documents which shed a new light on the dance maestro.
As Dominique Delouche sums it up, "Lifar has created a new race of dancer. Contemporary dancers are his heirs, whether they know it or not. But Lifar has also changed the audience by instilling into it fervour and passion."
Mauro Lanza – Marie-Agnès Gillot, Eleonora Abbagnato, Wilfried Romoli – Ensemble Court-Circuit
With Florence Clerc, Isabelle Guérin, Sylvie Guillem...
Galina Ulanova, Maya Plisetskaya, Vladimir Vasiliev… – Ballet du Bolshoï