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Subject: "Ballet novels" Archived thread - Read only
 
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Conferences What's Happening Topic #718
Reading Topic #718
Helen

29-05-00, 08:55 AM (GMT)
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"Ballet novels"
 
   Does anyone know of any books (fiction) with a ballet theme or setting? I have read one by Rumer Godden, which I didn't really enjoy, and in the past I have read all the children's ones.(Ballet Shoes, Lorna Hill, Drina etc. )Is there anything else, for grown-ups?


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  Subject     Author     Message Date     ID  
  RE: Ballet novels Tomoko.A 29-05-00 1
     RE: Ballet novels Anneliese 29-05-00 2
         RE: Ballet novels Ann 29-05-00 3
         RE: Ballet novels Tomoko.A 29-05-00 4
             RE: Ballet novels Susy 30-05-00 5
  RE: Ballet novels David Leonard 30-05-00 6
     RE: Ballet novels jonathan 30-05-00 7
         RE: Ballet novels jhanner 30-05-00 8
             RE: Ballet novels julia 30-05-00 9
                 RE: Ballet novels Ann Williams 30-05-00 10
                     RE: Ballet novels Helen 01-06-00 11
                         RE: Ballet novels Susy 02-06-00 15
                         RE: Ballet novels Susy 02-06-00 16
                     RE: Ballet novels julia 01-06-00 12
                         RE: Ballet novels Ann Williams 01-06-00 13
                             RE: Ballet novels Juliet 02-06-00 14

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Tomoko.A

29-05-00, 11:11 AM (GMT)
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1. "RE: Ballet novels"
In response to message #0
 
   Helen,I've read the following books.

"Firebird" by Harriet Castor (PAN)
- About relationships in the world of ballet, Castor was a professional dancer and performed for the Scottish Ballet.

"Collusion" by Evan Zimboth (Virago Press)
- Story of a young girl and her ballet master. This is an autobiography.

"Granny Dan" by Danielle Steel (Bantam Press)
- Typical Danielle Steel novel, but enjoyable.

If you need more information about these books, please let me know.


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Anneliese

29-05-00, 02:37 PM (GMT)
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2. "RE: Ballet novels"
In response to message #1
 
   And, of course, "the turning point", book of the film (with Shirley Mac Laine, Anne Bancroft, Mikhail Baryshnikiv and, fleetingly, Antoinette Sibley), author I've forgotten, but it was pretty realistic I felt (didn't see more than half the film but devoured the book!)


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Ann

29-05-00, 03:16 PM (GMT)
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3. "RE: Ballet novels"
In response to message #2
 
   The Book of Revelation by Rupert Thompson. Hmm.. a bit of a weird one this. Male ballet dancer gets kidnapped by three female fans and subsequent goings on...and consequences.


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Tomoko.A

29-05-00, 03:21 PM (GMT)
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4. "RE: Ballet novels"
In response to message #2
 
   Is "The Turning Point" available on Video? I always wanted to watch the film, but have never had the chance. Or I would love to buy the book. Could you give me the name of its publisher ?

It is not a ballet setting story, but if you love classical music, operas and art galleries, you will enjoy "The Interpreter" by Suzanne Glass (Arrow). This is a love story with lots of music (including Swan Lake)and arts. And the female character used to take ballet classes. Well, a little bit of ballet ! A beautifully written story and I loved it !


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Susy

30-05-00, 08:02 AM (GMT)
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5. "RE: Ballet novels"
In response to message #4
 
   A quote from Nureyev's biography by Peter Watson:

"In autumn 1981 Monique van Vooren published a novel, Night Sanctuary. This told the story of a Russian ballet star who had defected to the west, in London, in the 1950s. (...) Rudolf hated the book. He was furious. (...) Monique was banished."

My curiosity pushed me to read this novel, published by Signet. These are the very first sentences:

"Everything about Vladimir was beautiful. His pale skin, his Slavic bones, his awesome body, his terrifying anger. He was a sexual magnet attracting both men and women."

In the following pages you can easily recognize Margot Fonteyn in Dame Sybil Parkinson, if you bear the depraved sex and some blatant errors (such as the music of Spectre de la rose composed by Stravinsky!).


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David Leonard

30-05-00, 08:58 AM (GMT)
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6. "RE: Ballet novels"
In response to message #0
 
   >Does anyone know of any books (fiction)
>with a ballet theme or setting?

The sex squad, by David Leddick (mainly gay interest), and The short history of a prince, by Jane Hamilton (something for everyone!).


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jonathan

30-05-00, 10:44 AM (GMT)
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7. "RE: Ballet novels"
In response to message #6
 
   And Bullet in the Ballet, by Caryl Brahms & S J Simon


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jhanner

30-05-00, 12:43 PM (GMT)
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8. "RE: Ballet novels"
In response to message #7
 
   "White Ice" by Celia Brayfield about the Kirov/Diaghilev company and a fictional ballerina

Entertaining holiday stuff


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julia

30-05-00, 02:12 PM (GMT)
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9. "RE: Ballet novels"
In response to message #8
 
   Death in The Fifth Position by Edgar Box (alias for Gore Vidal, I believe).


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Ann Williams

30-05-00, 08:05 PM (GMT)
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10. "RE: Ballet novels"
In response to message #9
 
   Julia, are you sure? It seems highly unlikely that Gore Vidal ever wrote a novel about the ballet world. Could you provide more details so that I can chase this book up?

Thank you.


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Helen

01-06-00, 10:11 AM (GMT)
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11. "RE: Ballet novels"
In response to message #10
 
   I'm very grateful for all these suggestions - I had only heard of one or two of these books. I think I can find most of them, but "Night Sanctuary" is out of print, and I can't find the author of "Turning Point". Could anyone tell me where I could get hold of these two, please?


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Susy

02-06-00, 07:57 AM (GMT)
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15. "RE: Ballet novels"
In response to message #11
 
   For out-of-print books try at www.bibliofind.com, they don't sell but they will connect you with the right place in USA where the book you're looking for is available.


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Susy

02-06-00, 08:10 AM (GMT)
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16. "RE: Ballet novels"
In response to message #11
 
   For out-of-print books try at www.bibliofind.com, they don't sell but they'll connect you with the right place in USA where the title you're looking for is available.


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julia

01-06-00, 11:02 AM (GMT)
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12. "RE: Ballet novels"
In response to message #10
 
   Ann - yes I know it sounds unlikely, but it is true. I have tried to find the actual novel, but as usual, it isn't where I thought it was on my shelves. I read it as a paperback, but I can't remember the publisher.

However, in Vidal's book of memoirs, Palimpsest (also available in paperback) he has a chapter called 'Dancers: an interval. This relates to his life in the late 1940s, when he actually took ballet classes 'for his arthritic knee'. He speaks of watching Dolin and Markova back stage in 'Swan Lake'

"From the wings, I watched Pat and Markova. The two quarreled constantly during the pas de deux, and I was amzazed that the audience didn't hear them over the music. 'Put me down! It's the third beat,' muttered Markova. 'Since when could you count?' he snarled as she struggled free from him, landing on beat, on perfect point, and then to fifth position. Thus was one of my psuedonymous novels born, 'Death in the Fifth Position'."

If I ever find the paperback again, I'll put up the details.

Julia


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Ann Williams

01-06-00, 07:10 PM (GMT)
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13. "RE: Ballet novels"
In response to message #12
 
   Julia

How intriguing! Vidal always comes across in interviews as so loftily intellectual that his take on ballet should be interesting. If you do come across the book, please let us know who the publisher is.

Thanks for the info.


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Juliet

02-06-00, 02:28 AM (GMT)
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14. "RE: Ballet novels"
In response to message #13
 
   A Company of Swans by Eva Ibbotson.

She is an excellent writer of historical fiction....this one is quite well done.

Rumer Godden has also done two books for older children that I know of: Thursday's Child and Listen to the Nightingale, in addition to the aforementioned Pippa Passes for adults.

There are several books for children/young adults with a ballet focus, but not too many good ones for adult readers.

Ballerina by Edward M. Stewart is rather dated, but better written than some....


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