George Balanchine was thought to be one of the greatest choreographers of the Twentieth Century. First working with Sergei Diaghilev and his Ballet Russes. Years later he settled in NYC to create the School of American Ballet, later the NYC Ballet. Balanchine worked closely with Igor Stravinsky and together with his choreography and Igor’s score, modern ballet had a prominent place on the stage and in history.
Balanchine would play with his cat, Mourka, and observe how his body flew through the air and his every feline gesture was beheld into an observation. Balanchine observed and choreographed many of these suttle movements to be interpreted by his dancers into a ballet.
He even taught Mourka how to dance, and he would preform at parties, usually at Igor’s request. It was said to be the only time Balanchine was nervous before a performance.
Mourka even had his own autobiography published, assisted by Tanaquil LeClercq