|Rare Book & Manuscript Library|
At a Glance
The bulk of the collection comprises Leonide Massine's personal, family and professional correspondence with individuals and organizations. There are also some legal documents, Massine's professional notes on various ballet productions, handwritten text of his lecture on dance composition delivered in London in July 1932, notes with schedules, cast drafts, financial matters. The collection includes letters from many prominent Russian émigré dancers, composers, writers and artists, such as Alexandre Benois, Naum Gabo, Vernon Duke, Wassily Kandinsky, Nikolai Legat, Serge Lifar, Nikolai Minskii, Nicolas Nabokov, Zinaida Vengerova, Evgenii Zamiatin and others. There is an extensive correspondence between Massine's and his parents and sibblings.
Using the Collection
Rare Book and Manuscript Library
Restrictions on Access
This collection has no restrictions.
This collection is located on-site.
Terms Governing Use and Reproduction
Single photocopies may be made for research purposes. The RBML maintains ownership of the physical material only. Copyright remains with the creator and his/her heirs. The responsibility to secure copyright permission rests with the patron.
Identification of specific item; Date (if known); Leonide Massine papers; Box and Folder; Bakhmeteff Archive, Rare Book and Manuscript Library, Columbia University Library.
Donnor received this collection in about 1980 from Mary Ann De Vlieg, Massine's assistant during the last few years of his life. She collected the materials for her research project and later gave them to the donnor asking for help with the Russian. Mary Ann De Vlieg didn't complete her project and suggested the donnor to donate the materials to a library.
About the Finding Aid / Processing Information
Columbia University Libraries, Rare Book and Manuscript Library
Collection-level record describing unprocessed material made public in summer 2018 as part of the Hidden Collections initiative.
The collection was processed and finding aid written by Katia Davidenko in September 2019.
History / Biographical Note
Biographical / Historical
Léonide Massine (Leonid Fedorovich Miasin), 1896-1979, Russian dancer and choreographer, one of the most important figures in 20th-century dance. Studied acting and dance at Moscow's Imperial Theatre School, was a principal dancer and choreographer for Diaghilev's Ballet Russe and for the Ballet Russe de Monte Carlo. In the 1940s Massine worked in the United States. During the late 1940s and the 1950s, Massine spent most of his time in Europe working with many European ballet theaters and companies. He also choreographed ballets for films, including iconic "The Red Shoes"(1948) and "Tales of Hoffman"(1951), in which he also appeared, and Honeymoon(1958). Massine died in Cologne, West Germany, on March 16, 1979.