Hymn To Apollo: The Ancient World and the Ballets Russes

By Bogdan Horbal, Curator, Slavic and East European Collections
May 3, 2019

Color brochure for Metropolitan Musical Bureau, NY; NYPL Digital Collections, Image ID: BALRUSSE_BR01

The new exhibition, Hymn to Apollo: The Ancient World and Ballets Russes, now at New York’s University’s Institute for the Study of the Ancient World (15 East 84th Street) through June 2, explores both the role of dance in ancient culture and the influence of antiquity on the modernist reinventions of the Ballets Russes, the groundbreaking dance company founded in Paris by Sergei Diaghilev (1872-1929).Hymn to Apollo was curated by Clare Fitzgerald, associate director for exhibitions and gallery curator, and Rachel Herschman, curatorial assistant, both of whom are affiliated with the Institute. The exhibit is complemented by a fully illustrated catalog edited by Fitzgerald, and includes scholarly essays by John E. Bowlt, Herschman, Kenneth Lapatin, and Frederick G. Naerebout, plus a comprehensive object reference section.  

More than a dozen lenders, including the New York Public Library, loaned objects on view. The NYPL holds archival collections related to the Ballets Russes, most notably Serge Diaghilev papers (1910-1929) and correspondence (1918?-1929). In addition, the NYPL also holds  records of the Ballet Russe de Monte Carlo (circa 1936-1978) and the collection of Igor Youskevitch (1912-1994), the ballet's principal dancer. 

Hymn to Apollo is free and open to the public through June 2, 2019, Wednesday-Sunday, 11am-6pm; and Friday, 11am-8pm with a free guided tour on Fridays at 6 pm.