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Anna Pavlova, Russian ballerina. While touring in The Hague, Pavlova was told that she had pneumonia and required an operation. She was also told that she would never be able to dance again if she went ahead with it. She refused to have the surgery, saying "If I can't dance then I'd rather be dead." She died of pleurisy, three weeks short of her 50th birthday. She was holding her costume from The Dying Swan when she spoke her last words, "Play the last measure very softly."


Anna Pavlova.At the heart of her talent was sudden and instant inspiration. More often than not she was improvising, and could not repeat the pattern of her dances despite requests from her masters and partners. Later, when Anna Pavlova started teaching, this gift seemed to be a great obstacle as her students couldn’t copy the movements that she herself didn’t remember.


Anna Pavlova -- prima ballerina who invented pointe by darning her ballet slippers --photo by Ira L. Hill 1921

Anna Pavlovna (Matveyevna) Pavlova February 12 [O.S. January 31] 1881 – January 23, 1931) was a Russian prima ballerina of the late 19th and the early 20th centuries. She was a principal artist of the Imperial Russian Ballet and the Ballets Russes of Sergei Diaghilev. Pavlova is most recognized for the creation of the role The Dying Swan and, with her own company, became the first ballerina to tour ballet around the world.

von Education

Profile of Dying Swan Ballerina, Anna Pavlova

Russian ballerina Anna Pavlova, famous for her role as a swan in The Dying Swan, is here shown at her London home, Ivy Lodge in Hampstead, in 1927


Anna Pavlova and her pet swan Jack, 1905. If my Oma could have would have had a pet swan

Anna Pavlova vintage ballet ballerina photo by ilyaballet, via Flickr My ballet heroine.

von The Independent

Picture preview: Anna Pavlova Twentieth Century Ballerina

Anna Pavlova in a beautiful costume for a Russian dance.