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Vittorio Rieti, based on themes from operas by Vincenzo Bellini (1830-35, including La Sonnambula, I Puritani, Norma, and I Capuletti ed i Montecchi)
George Balanchine
Scenery and costumes by Dorothea Tanning. Scenery executed by E. B. Dunkel Studios; costumes executed by Karinska
February 27, 1946, Ballet Russe de Monte Carlo, City Center of Music and Drama, New York. Conductor: Emanuel Balaban
The Sleepwalker, Alexandra Danilova; The Poet, Nicholas Magallanes; The Coquette, Maria Tallchief; The Host (Husband of the Sleepwalker), Michel Katcharoff; Guests at the Ball, 8 couples; ENTERTAINERS AT THE BALL: SHEPHERDS’ DANCE: 2 couples; BLACKAMOORS’ DANCE: Ruthanna Boris, Leon Danielian; HARLEQUIN DANCE: Marie-Jeanne; HOOP DANCE: 4 women
Performance Type
See Also
Video Archives Recording
George Balanchine Foundation Interpreters Archive (Sleepwalker pas de deux, finale), 2001; (Sleepwalker pas de deux, Coquette pas de deux, finale), forthcoming.
At a masked ball with entertainments, the Poet pays suit to the Coquette, who is escorted by the Host. After the guests go in to supper an apparition in white enters, a beautiful Sleepwalker. Entranced, the Poet tries to wake her, but she eludes him. The jealous Coquette informs the Host who, enraged, stabs the Poet. The Sleepwalker reappears and bears the Poet’s body away. The role of the Poet was choreographed on Frederic Franklin, who could not perform at the premiere owing to injury.
Additional Productions
The Entertainers’ dances (also called DIVERTISSEMENTS) have been changed often by the many companies that have staged the ballet. Examples in three principal companies include: Grand Ballet du Marquis de Cuevas: MOORISH DANCE sometimes substituted for BLACKAMOORS’ DANCE; until about 1950, HARLEQUIN DANCE omitted; 1950, SHEPHERDS’ DANCE (PASTORALE) changed from two couples to one, HOOP DANCE replaced by ACROBATS’ DANCE for three (various combinations of men and women). New York City Ballet: 1960, name changed from Night Shadow to La Sonnambula, HARLEQUIN DANCE restored (for a man instead of a woman; frequently altered for various performers), ACROBATS’ DANCE retained from de Cuevas production (HOOP DANCE omitted); 1967, SHEPHERDS’ DANCE (PASTORALE) changed from two couples to a pas de trois for a virtuoso man and two women; 1979, BLACKAMOORS’ DANCE eliminated. American Ballet Theatre: 1981, HOOP DANCE rechoreographed by John Taras as GYPSY DANCE, BLACKAMOORS’ DANCE retitled DANSE EXOTIQUE.
New Productions by Balanchine Companies
1960, New York City Ballet, with scenery and lighting by Esteban Francés and costumes by André Levasseur.

1948   Grand Ballet de Monte-Carlo (1947-1951)
1955   Netherlands Ballet (in 1961 became Dutch National Ballet)
1955   Royal Danish Ballet
1957   Ballets de Paques (Monte Carlo)
1960   Netherlands Ballet (in 1961 became Dutch National Ballet)
1960   New York City Ballet
1961   Ballet Rambert (London)
1964   Geneva Ballet (Grand Theatre de Geneve [Ballet])
1965   National Ballet (Washington, D.C., 1963-1974)
1967   English National Ballet (London Festival)
1970   Ballet de San Juan
1971   Dutch National Ballet
1972   Geneva Ballet (Grand Theatre de Geneve [Ballet])
1972   Grand Theatre de Bordeaux
1974   San Francisco Ballet
1975   Pittsburgh Ballet Theatre
1977   Louisville Ballet
1977   Turino Opera (Italy)
1978   Ballet de Nancy (France)
1979   Dallas Ballet
1980   American Ballet Theatre
1980   Boston Ballet
1981   American Ballet Theatre
1983   Ballet du Nord (France)
1984   Ballet Dallas
1985   Teatro Colon (Buenos Aires, Argentina)
1986   Ballet du Nord (France)
1986   Cincinnati Ballet
1987   American Ballet Theatre
1987   Kansas City Ballet
1987   Louisville Ballet
1988   Arena di Verona (Italy)
1988   Ballet du Nord (France)
1988   Boston Ballet
1988   Tulsa Ballet Theatre
1989   American Ballet Theatre
1990   Ballet de Nancy (France)
1990   Indianapolis Ballet Theatre
1990   Kansas City Ballet
1990   Louisville Ballet
1991   Universal Ballet Company (Korea)
1992   Den Norske Opera [Ballet] (Norway)
1993   The Australian Ballet
1993   Boston Ballet
1993   Cincinnati Ballet
1993   Les Grands Ballets Canadiens
1993   Pennsylvania Ballet
1994   Pittsburgh Ballet Theatre
1994   Universal Ballet Company (Korea)
1996   Kansas City Ballet
1997   Aterballetto-Centro Regionale della Danza (Reggio Emilia, Italy)
1997   Hungarian National Ballet
1998   Teatro alla Scala (Milan)
2001   Universal Ballet Company (Korea)
2002   Ballet de Nancy (France)
2002   Cincinnati Ballet
2002   Texas Ballet (formerly Fort Worth Dallas Ballet)
2005   Ballet Arizona
2006   Miami City Ballet
2008   Ballet Arizona
2008   Suzanne Farrell Ballet
2009   Carolina Ballet
2009   North Carolina Dance Theater
2009   Royal Danish Ballet
2010   Suzanne Farrell Ballet
2011   Miami City Ballet
2013   Los Angeles Ballet
2015   Ballet Arizona
2015   Perm State Ballet
2018   Sacramento Ballet – Selections

Recorded Performances
1995, Nonesuch, The Balanchine Library: Dancing for Mr. B (rehearsal excerpt);
2005, Zeitgeist Films, Ballets Russes (excerpt)

1948 (British television)
1958 (BBC [London])
1963 Sleepwalker pas de deux (NBC)
1966 excerpt (CBS, Camera Three)
1988 (PBS, Dance in America, “An Evening at ABT”)
1989 (BBC [London])
1991 excerpts (French television, FR3, “Le Ballet national de Nancy”)
1993 excerpts(French television, FR3)
196 [?] Sleepwalker pas de deux (BBC [London], Music for You)

Source Notes

Additional music information provided by Vittorio Rieti; additional revisions and stagings information provided by Rosemary Dunleavy, John Taras, Frederic Franklin.

Jean Sibelius (Valse Triste from incidental music for Kuolema, Op. 44, 1903)
George Balanchine and Lydia Ivanova or Ivanova under Balanchine’s supervision
Costume by Boris Erbshtein
August 15, 1922, resort at Sestroretsk, near Petrograd
Lydia Ivanova
Performance Type
See Also
Also performed by Tamara Geva and Alexandra Danilova on the tour of Germany and during the London engagement of the Principal Dancers of the Russian State Ballet in the summer and fall of 1924. The critic Cherepnin remarked on the work’s ‘Duncanesque rhythmic plasticity’ (Moscow, February 1924). Geva believed elements of the solo ‘prefigure’ the Sleepwalker in The Night Shadow (La Sonnambula) [232], especially the following passage, which recalls the Sleepwalker’s first entrance: ‘I moved forward toward the very edge of the proscenium as though I were blind and were about to go right off into the pit’ (Slonimsky, pp. 63, 13). The solo was taught in class at the Vaganova Academy at least as late as 1990.
Additional Productions
2004, Finnish National Ballet
2004   Finnish National Ballet
Source Notes
Full documentation of Balanchine’s activities before he left the Soviet Union in 1924 is not possible. Printed programs of official performances at the Maryinsky Theater and Imperial Theater School in St. Petersburg exist, but none have been found for the performances given by the Young Ballet; a single poster announcing the opening concert is in the Museum of the Vaganova Academy of Russian Ballet. (The Maryinsky Theater was known as the State Maryinsky Theater between 1918 and 1920 and from 1920 to 1935 as the Petrograd/Leningrad State Academic Theater for Opera and Ballet. It was then called the Kirov Theater until 1991 when it again became the Maryinsky. The Imperial Theater School was renamed the Petrograd Theater School in 1918. Today it is the Vaganova School of Russian Ballet.) Research was carried out in Russia by Elizabeth Souritz (Moscow Institute of the History of the Arts) and the late Vera Krasovskaya (St. Petersburg, State Academy of Theater Art) and by Gunhild Schüller of the Institut für Theaterwissenschaft, University of Vienna, who visited Moscow and St. Petersburg in 1981. Major printed resources consulted were the newspapers Krasnaya gazeta and Zhizn iskusstva, the periodicals Teatr and Teatr i iskusstvo, and the weeklies of the Petrograd/Leningrad State Academic Theaters (Ezhenedel’nik petrogradskikh gosudarstvenniykh akademicheskikh teatrov; Ezhenedel’nik teatrov v Leningrade). Records 1-35 are based on the research of Souritz, Krasovskaya, and Schüller, on interviews conducted with Pëtr Gusev in St. Petersburg (Poel Karp, 1980) and with Balanchine, Alexandra Danilova, and Tamara Geva in New York (Nancy Reynolds and Gunhild Schüller, 1979-81), and on material from publications cited in full in the BIBLIOGRAPHY: Balanchine’s Complete Stories of the Great Ballets, Alexandra Danilova’s Choura, Tamara Geva’s Split Seconds, I Remember Balanchine (Francis Mason, ed., containing Yuri Slonimsky’s essay ‘Balanchine: The Early Years’ and the recollections of Geva, Danilova, and Stukolkina), the Maryinsky Theater’s exhibition catalogue Vek Balanchina – The Balanchine Century, 1904-2004, Mikhail Mikhailov’s My Life in Ballet, Natalia Roslavleva’s Era of the Russian Ballet, Bernard Taper’s Balanchine: A Biography, Robert Tracy’s Balanchine’s Ballerinas, and A.E. Twysden’s Alexandra Danilova.