I Am Rudolf Nureyev
There is no point in introducing Rudolf Nureyev, most celebrated dancer of the 20th century. I especially remember him as the Director of the Paris Opera Ballet, where, as well as directing, he continued to dance and to discover and promote younger dancers in whom he sensed the potential to become stars. In fact he mentored and trained such dancers as Sylvie Guillem, Isabelle Guérin, Manuel Legris, and many others who went on to perform at the highest level.
As a dancer Rudolf always shielded his joints and limbs from cold in order to preserve his muscle integrity which was the main factor of his heavenly dancing. Rudolf favored thick sweaters and turtlenecks and he was rarely seen without wool hats and leather caps, accompanied with thick scarves. He liked to top his jumpers with a leather jacket or pea coat, or even a heavy long coat. Corduroy pants often were his choice of trousers, and Chelsea boots often finished off his outfit nicely.
Rudolf’s style was highly utilitarian and functional and at the end managed to convey a strong sense of personality and comfort, yet some predictability, as Rudolf did not depart from wearing the uniform that he liked, day in and day out.
In fact even today, fashion couturiers such as Yves Saint Laurent, John Galliano and Christian Dior are heavily inspired by Rudolf’s style when elaborating themes for their collections. Rudolf’s distinctive individuality was seen in his dancing, his clothing style, and most likely in all other aspects of his life.
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