Tumanishvili Tamar

T. Tumanishvili

Tumanishvili (Tumanova) Tamar (1919-1996), French ballet dancer. She was born in Shanghai, China, where she lived along with her mother Evgenia Tumanishvili, till 1926. She was carried away by ballet at the age of five under the influence of legendary Russian ballerina Anna Pavlova – little Tamar saw her performing the ‘Dying Swan’ number to the music of Saint-Saens. Initially N. Tumanishvili attended the ballet classes in Shanghai; from 1929 she studied at the Russian Ballet School of O. Preobrazhenskaya in Paris. In 1929 she debuted on the stage of Paris Grand Opera in the ballet titled Jean’s Fan. In 1932 she was invited to the ballet company of George Balanchin, who was working in Paris at that time. Since then she has been a leading dancer in famous European and American ballet companies: Ballet Russe de Monte Carlo (1931-32), Ballet 1933 (1933), Original Ballet Russe (1940), Ballet Theatre (1944-45), Grand Ballet du Mark de Cuevas (1949), Festival Ballet (1952-54), Grand Opera (1947-59), La Scala (1951-52, 1958). Her refined performance and good looks brought her great success. She has danced over 100 ballet parts; among them Giselle (Giselle, Adan), Odeta-Odillia, Aurora (The Swan Lake, the Sleeping Beauty, P. Tchaikovsky), Coppelia (Coppelia, Delibes), Gaiane (Gaiane, A. Khachaturian), etc. T. Tumanishvili played leading parts in G. Balanchin’s productions (G. Bizet’s The Crystal Tower, E. Orick’s Mozartiana, I. Stravinsky’s The Angel’s Kiss, etc.). She also played in A. Hitchcock’s film Torn Curtain and impersonated Anna Pavlova in the film Tonight We Sing. T. Tumanishvili did her bit of a choreographer – she staged A. Khachaturian’s Gaiane. She was engaged in a pedagogical work as well.

T. Tumanishvili died in Los Angeles, USA.