Biography of Maurice Béjart (1927-2007)

Dancer, choreographer, production designer and director of opera and ballet French born on January 1, 1927 in Marseilles and died in Lausanne, Switzerland on 22 November 2007, whose original name is Maurice Jean de Berger, son of the philosopher Gaston Berger.

He began his studies in Marseille, studies that expanded in Paris and London with Madame Rousanne, Léo Staats, Lubov Egorova, Nora Kiss and Vera Volkova. After a brief stay at the Municipal Theater of Vichy in 1945, Béjart joined the Ballets de Paris de Roland Petit between 1947 and 1949. With them he premiered ' Adame Miroir (1948), de Janine Charrat. Between 1949 and 1950, he danced with the International Ballet of Mona Inglesby, and between 1950 and 1952 with the Royal Swedish Ballet, which premiered Medea (1950) of Birgit Cullberg. In 1953 he co-founded, with Jean Laurent, Les Ballets de l'Etoile, for which he choreographed: La Mégère Apprivoisée (Scarlatti, 1954), Symphonie Pour un Homme Seul (Henry and Schaeffer, 1955), his first ballet with musique concrète, Le Voyage au Coeur d'un Enfant (Henry, 1955) and Arcane I (Henry, 1955). In 1957, the company was transformed in the Ballet-Théâtre de Paris de Maurice Béjart, with new productions: Sonate à Trois (Bartók, 1957), Orphée (Henry, 1958), Arcane II (Henry, 1958), Thème et Variations (music jazz, 1959) and Signes (Henry, 1959).

In 1959, a company formed by dancers from the Ballet of Milroad Miskovitch, Western Theatre Ballet and the Ballet Theatre, premiered at the Theatre Royal de la Monnaie in Brussels the choreography of Béjart Le Sacre du Printemps, with music by Stravinsky and Tania Bari and Germinal Casado as soloists. The success was so amazing that from this initial nucleus was created the following year the Ballet du XXe Siècle, based in Brussels, and since 1970 the associated Mudra school, currently Rudra. In 1987, the company changed its name to Béjart Ballet Lausanne and in September 1992, after being reduced to twenty dancers, took the new name of Rudra Ballet, with which he debuted in Switzerland in mid-December.

It subsequently returned its name to Béjart Ballet Lausanne. Most of the choreographic work of Béjart was created for this company: Bolero (Ravel, 1960), Les Quatre Fils d'Aymon (several, 1961) choreographed Charrat, Les Contes d'Hoffmann (Offenbach1961), Les Sept péchés Capitaux (Weill, 1961), Les Noces (Stravinsky, 1962), Venusberg (Wagner, 1963) second version Bacchanale from Tannhäuser (1961), Suite Viennoise (Schoenberg, Berg and Webern, 1962), Neuvième (Beethoven Symphonie1964), Mathilde (Wagner, 1965), Prospective (1965) which includes Variations Pour a Porte et a (Henry, 1965) Soupir, Romeo and Juliet (Berlioz, 1966), Messe Pour le Temps présent (Henry, 1967); A la Recherche de... (1968) where included Bhakti, Baudelaire (Wagner and Debussy, 1968), Ni Fleurs ni Couronnes (Tchaikovsky, 1968), on the music of La Bella Durmiente, Les Vainqueurs (Wagner, 1969), Nomos Alpha (Xenaquis, 1969) created for Paolo Bortoluzzi, Actus Tragicus (Bach, 1969), Serait-ce la Mort? (R. Strauss, 1970) premiered in Marseille, Offrande Chorégraphique (Bach, 1971), Le Chant du Compagnon Errant (Mahler, 1971), Nijinsky, Clown de Dieu (Tchaikovsky and Henry, 1971), Stimmung (Stockhausen, 1972), Golestan, ou Le Jardin des Roses (Iranian traditional music, 1973) released during the celebrations of the founding of the Persian Empire, Le Marteau sans Maître (Boulez, 1973) premiered at la Scala in Milan, Tombeau (Boulez1973) which would then be part of ballet Pli selon Pli (1975), Ce que l'amour me Dit (Mahler, 1974), Seraphite (Mozart, 1974), Notre Faust (Bach, 1975), Acqua Alta (several, 1975) presented at the Venice International Festival of the dance, that Béjart was Chairman of the artistic Committee, Héliogabale, ou L' Couronee Anarchiste (Verdi, Bach et al., 1976), Gaîté Parisienne (Offenbach and Rosenthal1978), Dichterliebe (Schumann and rattan, 1978) with Béjart in the role of poet, Les Illuminations (Henry, 1979), La Flaute Enchantée (Mozart, 1981), Thalassa-Mare Nostrum (Theodorakis, 1982), Le Concours (several, 1985), Le Martyre de Saint Sebastian (Debussy, 1986), Malraux, ou La Métamorphose des Dieux (Hugues Le Bars, 1986), Wien, Wien, Nur du Allein (several, 1986) presented at the Dance Festival in ViennaDybbuk (Schoenberg, 1988), 1789... et Nous (several, 1989) for the bicentenary of the revolution French, Mozart-Tango (Mozart, 1990), La Mort Subite (several, 1991) presented at the Ruhr Festival, in which the own Béjart appeared sporadically on several occasions, Tod in Wien (Mozart, 1991), Opera (Verdi, 1991), Le Mandarin Merveilleux (Bartók, 1991), the Crucifixion (Stravinsky, 1991), Sissi, l' Impératrice Anarchiste (various1992), Ballade de la Rue Athina (Hadjidakis, 1993) premiered in Athens, l'art du Pas de Deux (several, 1993), AmoRoma (Rota, 1993), King Lear - Prospero (Purcell and Hochstätter, 1994), l'art du Pas de Deux-2 (several, 1994), À Propos of Scheherazade (Ravel and Korsakov, 1995), Barocco Bel Canto (Baroque music of the 18th century, 1997), Titre to come (Bars, Gleason, Presley and Baudelaire1997), MutationX (Bars, Gleason and Zorn, 1998) premiered in Moscow, Dialogue de L'ombre Double (Boulez, 1998) and L'Heure Exquise (Mahler, Webern, Bach, Lehár, 1998). Great creative capacity led him to perform choreographies for many other companies, among them: Haut Voltage (Constant and Henry, 1956) for Les Ballets Janine Charrat, Le Voyage (Henry, 1962) for the Ballet of Cologne, based on the "book of the dead" in Tibet, the Damnation of Faust (Berlioz, 1964), Renard (Stravinsky, 1965), l'oiseau de Feu (Stravinsky, 1970), Arepo (Gounod, 1986) and Le Presbytère n'a Rien Perdu de are Charme, nor her garden of are Eclat (Queen and Mozart, 1997) of Paris Opera Ballet, Kabuki (Mayuzumi, 1986) and M (Mishima) (1993) for the Tokyo Ballet, and Ring um den Ring (Wagner, 1990) and Ich Stehe im Regen und Warte (1995) for the NDT3. In 1973 created Je t'Aime, your Danses de François Weyerganss, for a television show, in which he danced to Rita Poelvoorde.

His artistic side did not stay only in the dance; He is also the author of the books: Mathilde, ou Le Temps Perdu (Paris, 1962), Maurice Béjart: an instant dans la Vie (Paris, 1979) and par Béjart Béjart (Paris, 1979). He was awarded the great prize of choreography of the theatre of Nations (1960), fraternity Prize (1966), Dance Magazine Award (1974), Erasmus Prize of modern Ballet (1974), great prize of the society of authors of France (1980), prize of the Association of humanitarian action "Together for Peace" (Rome, 1995) and prize Kyoto of the Foundation Inamori (1999), among many others. From 1995 he was a member of the French Academy.

In October 2004 it celebrated fifty years of creation with an outstanding night at La Scala in Milan, where cast back to their long repertoire and made the dancers in his company, which included new figures of Spanish Ballet, as Ruth Miró and Víctor Jiménez, to interpret pieces that had long time that were not on the scene. The show received the name of "l'art d' être grand-Père" ("the art of being a grandfather").

In December 2005, for its part, released "The dance song", a show inspired by the Zarathustra Nietzsche; in it, the French choreographer composed "a hymn to the human body dancing, beyond of the centuries, races and civilizations", all spiced with the music of Richard Wagner.