9 March 2021 09:00
Today marks 136 years since the birth of Tamara Karsavina, the legendary Russian ballerina, and one of the founders of the RAD.
Born in St. Petersburg in 1885, Karsavina’s early career saw her dance with the Imperial Ballet alongside her celebrated rival dancer Anna Pavlova, before appearing with the distinguished Diaghilev ballet in 1909 as ‘perhaps the greatest of Russian dancers’.
Karsavina came to London, joining the founding committee of The Association of Teachers of Operatic Dancing of Great Britain – which went on to become the Royal Academy of Dance. A hugely influential teacher across the world of ballet, her ‘Karsavina Syllabus’ devised for the RAD in 1954 is still taught to students on ballet teacher education programmes at RAD headquarters.