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|About the Change|
Frederick Ashton was born on September 17th 1904 and companies across the world are marking his centenary in the best possible way, by performing the ballets which are his legacy to us.
His lyrical, witty, consummately musical and often passionate choreography has brought joy to very many over the years, defining the style in which the two Royal Ballet companies grew up and forming some of our greatest dancers.
These pages form our own contribution to the celebrations and we are particularly pleased to be able to offer a 'first' - the online edition of Following Sir Fred's Steps, (originally published in book form by Dance Books) which contains all the proceedings of the conference held in Ashton's honour in 1994 and is a major resource for Ashton scholars as well as irresistibly fascinating reading for the rest of us.
Also in these pages you can find links to hundreds of reviews of Ashton's works - just click on the ballet you're interested in on our Ashton's ballets page. The same page will lead you to our own descriptions of some of the major pieces, with lots of additional information like our Facts about Fille page. And there's an interview in which Brenda Last talks about Lise - the first of a series in which dancers discuss some of the great Ashton roles, as well as Leo Kersley talking about his memories of Ashton the dancer. A recent addition (January 2010) is Clive Barnes authoritative article from 1963 - 'La Fille Mal Gardée in perspective'. So read on...
Ashton with Margaret Barbieri after a rehearsal of The Two Pigeons
Photograph copyright Leslie E. Spatt