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Music and arts in the collaboration of the Groupe des Six with the Ballets suédois (1920-1925)





The Ballets suédois was formed in Paris in 1920 by Rolf de Maré, director, and Jean Biirlin,choreographer. In its five-year existence, this company asserted its wish to break away from the Russianhegemony by proposing daring performances. The most innovative of them were created in collaborationwith composers from 'les six' such as Milhaud, Poulenc, Honeger, Auric or Tailleferre, and also with thecontribution of writers and painters such as Jean Cocteau, Paul Claudel, Blaise Cendrars, RicciottoCanudo, Fernand Léger, Jean Hugo or Irène Lagut. Between 1921 and 1923, the company stagedMilhaud's L'Homme et son désir and La Création du monde, Honegger's Skating Rink, Tailleferre'sMarchand d'oiseaux and The Marriage on the Eiffel Tower by 'les six' (to which Durey did notcontribute) at the Théâtre des Champs-Elysées; so many prototypes on which drama, painting and musicnot only imposed constant choreographic renewal, but a renewal of the ballet as a genre. This thesis dealswith the connection between those compositions and the different forms of art they combine in the samecreative energy. The genetic study is based on the comparison of the handwritten scores with thetapuscripts and the manuscripts of the librettos (kept at the Dansmuseet in Stockholm or at the FundsBlaise Cendrars of the Swiss Literary Archives in Bern). It also studies correspondence, models ofscenery, costumes, choreographic sketches and aims at defining the place and role of al! the performers in_those ballets. It stresses the impact the collaboration between the Swedish and 'les six' had, not only onthe evolution of dancing, but also on thal of other forms of arts.

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