Five Things About Marguerite and Armand
February 25, 2020
1. The story is based on the 1848 novel by Alexandre Dumas, La Dame aux camélias, which also inspired Giuseppe Verdi’s 1853 opera, La Traviata.
2. Margot Fonteyn and Rudolf Nureyev were the only dancers to perform Marguerite and Armand during their lifetimes. Their debut performance at Covent Garden on March 12, 1963 was rewarded with 21 curtain calls! They performed Marguerite and Armand for the last time in 1977 when Fonteyn was 58.
3. Marguerite and Armand was revived for the first time in 2003 with Sylvie Guillem and Nicolas Le Riche in the leading roles. Other star duos have followed, including Tamara Rojo and Sergei Polunin.
4. The Fonteyn/Nureyev partnership was well-established by the time of Marguerite and Armand. To acknowledge this, set designer Cecil Beaton projected images of Fonteyn and Nureyev against the stage. He later removed them after facing criticism for overpromoting the dancers.
5. Today, Cecil Beaton’s projections have returned to Marguerite and Armand and depict images of the dancers performing. Beaton's stage design includes a golden structure resembling a cage, alluding to the social imprisonment of Marguerite's life as a courtesan.
Angels' Atlas & Chroma & Marguerite and Armand is onstage February 29 – March 7, 2020.