Dancer

Dancer

A Novel

Book - 2003
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Baker & Taylor
Presents a fictional account of the life of Rudolf Nureyev, following his first ballet lessons under Anna Vasileva, his relationship with the ambitious Yulia, and his experiences with Venezuelan hustler Victor.

McMillan Palgrave
From the acclaimed author of This Side of Brightness, the epic life and times of Rudolf Nureyev, reimagined in a dazzlingly inventive masterpiece-published to coincide with the tenth anniversary of Nureyev's death
A Russian peasant who became an international legend, a Cold War exile who inspired millions, an artist whose name stood for genius, sex, and excess-the magnificence of Rudolf Nureyev's life and work are known, but now Colum McCann, in his most daring novel yet, reinvents this erotically charged figure through the light he cast on those who knew him.
Taking his inspiration from the biographical facts, McCann tells the story through a chorus of voices: there is Anna Vasileva, Rudi's first ballet teacher, who rescues her protégé from the stunted life of his town; Yulia, whose sexual and artistic ambitions are thwarted by her Soviet-sanctioned marriage; and Victor, the Venezuelan hustler, who reveals the lurid underside of the gay celebrity set. Spanning four decades and many worlds, from the horrors of Stalingrad to the wild abandon of New York in the eighties, Dancer is peopled by a large cast of characters, obscure and famous: doormen and shoemakers, Margot Fonteyn and John Lennon. And at the heart of the spectacle stands the artist himself, willful, lustful, and driven by a never-to-be-met need for perfection.
In ecstatic prose, McCann evokes the distinct consciousness of the man and the glittering reflection of the myth. The result is a monumental story of love, art, and exile.


Holtzbrinck
From the acclaimed author of This Side of Brightness , the epic life and times of Rudolf Nureyev, reimagined in a dazzlingly inventive masterpiece-published to coincide with the tenth anniversary of Nureyev's death A Russian peasant who became an international legend, a Cold War exile who inspired millions, an artist whose name stood for genius, sex, and excess-the magnificence of Rudolf Nureyev's life and work are known, but now Colum McCann, in his most daring novel yet, reinvents this erotically charged figure through the light he cast on those who knew him. Taking his inspiration from the biographical facts, McCann tells the story through a chorus of voices: there is Anna Vasileva, Rudi's first ballet teacher, who rescues her protégé from the stunted life of his town; Yulia, whose sexual and artistic ambitions are thwarted by her Soviet-sanctioned marriage; and Victor, the Venezuelan hustler, who reveals the lurid underside of the gay celebrity set. Spanning four decades and many worlds, from the horrors of Stalingrad to the wild abandon of New York in the eighties, Dancer is peopled by a large cast of characters, obscure and famous: doormen and shoemakers, Margot Fonteyn and John Lennon. And at the heart of the spectacle stands the artist himself, willful, lustful, and driven by a never-to-be-met need for perfection. In ecstatic prose, McCann evokes the distinct consciousness of the man and the glittering reflection of the myth. The result is a monumental story of love, art, and exile.

Blackwell North Amer
A Russian peasant who became an international legend, a Cold War exile who inspired the adoration of millions, an artist whose name was a byword for genius, sex, and excess. The magnificence of Rudolf Nureyev's life and work is known, but now Colum McCann reinvents this figure through the light he shed on the lives of those who knew him.
Boldly embellishing the biographical facts, McCann tells the story through a chorus of voices. There is Anna Vasileva, Rudi's first ballet teacher, who, banished from St. Petersburg, rescues her preternaturally talented protege from the stunted life of his town; Yulia, whose sexual and artistic ambitions are thwarted by her Soviet-sanctioned marriage; Victor, a decadent Venezuelan, who revels in the hedonism of the gay celebrity set; Odile, the legendary cook, who finds love at middle age while feeding the great and their hangers-on. Spanning four decades and many worlds, from the killing fields of World War II to the wild abandon of New York's gaudy eighties, Dancer is peopled by a large cast of characters, obscure and famous, real and imagined.

Baker
& Taylor

The author of The Side of Brightness presents a fictional account of the life of Rudolf Nureyev, following his first ballet lessons under Anna Vasileva, his relationship with the ambitious Yulia, and his experiences with Venezuela hustler Victor. 75,000 first printing.

Publisher: New York : Metropolitan Books, 2003
Edition: 1st ed
ISBN: 9780805067927
0805067922
Branch Call Number: FICTION MCCANN
Characteristics: 336 p. ; 25 cm

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WVMLStaffPicks Jan 18, 2015

Rudolf Nureyev comes to life in McCann’s “bravo” fictional depiction of the great dancer’s life. The poverty of Nureyev’s early years in a bleak Russian village is the backdrop to his intense desire to twirl and tap and fling himself across the floor, leading to his eventual defection to Paris and betrayal of his family. McCann tells his tale through interwoven voices and we discover Nureyev from many angles and aspects; the larger-than-life dancer, the hedonistic seeker of wealth and pleasure, and the loving son whose deepest sadness was to leave his mother behind when he fled Russia. We meet Margot Fonteyn, his greatest dance partner; Erik Bruhn, his lover who was also a lead dancer; and numerous others, such as Andy Warhol, the Kennedys, Truman Capote, and Jimi Hendrix who all peopled Nureyev’s extravagant and successful career.

s
smilici
Aug 09, 2012

Graceful and hypnotic

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