fbpx Nureyev | Gene Siskel Film Center
Film Series: Runs & Limited Engagements


2018, David Morris and Jacqui Morris, UK, 109 min.

Show Times

  • Fri, Jul 19th 4:00pm
  • Sun, Jul 21st 1:00pm
  • Tue, Jul 23rd 6:00pm
Back by popular demand!

“A meticulous, heartbreaking tour de force…more than just essential viewing for anyone interested in ballet and dance.”—Leslie Felperin, Guardian

This poetic documentary movingly evokes the life and career of the charismatic Rudolf Nureyev, the Russian dancer who singlehandedly transformed the stuffy image of ballet with an athleticism and airborne grace that was unprecedented in the history of the art. Front and center is a previously unseen trove of early and rare VHS performance footage from the collection of the Rudolf Nureyev Foundation, plus extended dance sequences charting the artist’s relationship with the Danish dancer Erik Bruhn, and career-changing partnership with the London Royal Ballet’s prima ballerina Margot Fonteyn, a made-in-heaven pairing that imbued classics including "Swan Lake" with a new and daring eroticism and passion. The filmmakers structure Nureyev’s personal history around the dance, utilizing interpretive modern ballet sequences to trace the details of a life that begins with an impoverished childhood in the postwar Soviet Union and early training under the great A.I. Pushkin, and explodes artistically with stardom in the West, the political bomb of defection, celebrity notoriety, and a tragically early death from AIDS. DCP digital. (BS)

THE WHITE CROW, a fictionalization of Nureyev's early life, plays July 26-August 1.

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