George Balanchine called the exuberant Allegro Brillante “everything I know about classical ballet in thirteen minutes.”
One of George Balanchine’s most joyous, pure dance pieces, Allegro Brillante is characterized by what Maria Tallchief — the ballerina on whom the bravura leading role was created — called "an expansive Russian romanticism." The ballet is set to Tschaikovsky's Piano Concerto No. 3, a work that the composer created from sketches for a composition that was intended to be his Sixth Symphony, but which instead served as a single movement work which was published posthumously in 1894. Balanchine described this ballet as a concentrated essay in the extended classical vocabulary, in which a maximum amount of choreographic development is contained within a rather restricted area of time and space.
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