Skip to main content
COLLECTION Identifier: MS Thr 414.1

Howard D. Rothschild collection on Ballets Russes of Serge Diaghilev: Manuscripts and objects,

Correspondence, contracts, compositons and objects related to Serge Diaghilev's Ballets Russes, collected by Howard D. Rothschild.

Dates

  • 1908-1969, (bulk) 1908-1929.

Language of Materials

Collection materials are in Russian, English and French.

Conditions Governing Access

There are no restrictions on physical access to this material.

Extent

1 collection (5 linear feet (9 boxes and 1 bust))

Includes correspondence between Serge Diaghilev and Sergei Grigoriev, and between other members of Ballets Russes; Diaghilev's contracts with dancers and other performers for Ballets Russes seasons from 1908 to 1929, notes on dance lessons and choreography, and notes on productions, figurines, jewelry for Ballets Russes costumes and objects.

Biographical / Historical

Howard D. Rothschild (d. 1989) was an artist and a major American collector of artwork related to Serge Diaghilev's Ballets Russes. He developed a passion for the Ballets Russes as a child after attending a ballet where Waslaw Nijinsky withdrew from a performance during the company's tour of America in 1916. The collection was amassed by purchase and by gift from the dancers and artists with whom Rothschild developed friendships.

Serge Diaghilev (1872-1929) was a Russian ballet impresario, the founder, producer and artistic director of Ballets Russes.

Ballets Russes was established by Serge Diaghilev in 1909 as a touring company to promote Russian ballet in Europe. After World War I the company permanently relocated to the West. The company gave rise to careers of a great number of outstanding Russian and Western dancers, choreographers, composers and artists who had recreated the art of ballet for the 20th-century, both in Europe and in the United States.

Arrangement

Arranged into the following series:
  1. I. Correspondence
  2. II. Contracts
  3. III. Compositions
  4. IV. Objects

Physical Location

b, bust in HTC reading room

Immediate Source of Acquisition

No accession number. Bequest of Howard D. Rothschild, 1035 Park Avenue, New York, New York; received: 1990 March 23.

Separated Materials

Other parts of the bequest were cataloged as:
Ballets Russes souvenir programs, books and periodicals from the bequest were incorporated into the Harvard Theatre Collection general holdings. Provenance of each item was indicated.

Processing Information

Processed by: Irina Klyagin

The collection was intially processed in 1991 by Catherine Johnson, Amy Lucker and Kathy Markees. It has been frequently used by researchers, so the previous call numbers (where applicable) have been recorded.
Link to catalog
Title
Rothschild, Howard D., collector. Howard D. Rothschild collection on Ballets Russes of Serge Diaghilev: Manuscripts and objects: Guide.
Author
Harvard Theatre Collection, Houghton Library, Harvard College Library
Description rules
dacs
EAD ID
hou01975

Repository Details

Part of the Houghton Library Repository

Houghton Library is Harvard College's principal repository for rare books and manuscripts, literary and performing arts archives, and more. The library's holdings of primary source material are managed by an expert staff and shared with scholars, students and the public in the reading room.

Contact:
Harvard Yard
Harvard University
Cambridge MA 02138 USA
(617) 495-2440