GEORGIANS WHO HAVE INFLUENCED THE WESTERN WORLD

Born in 1904, into a highly music-oriented family of a renowned composer as a father, and a mother who excelled at playing the piano, George Balanchine (né Giorgi Balanchivadze) first tried his luck with the piano at the age of five. When he was nine, he was already taking ballet classes and by the time he was fourteen, he had fallen in love so much with the exquisite dance that he refused to move back to Georgia, like the rest of the Balanchivadzes did, finding it harder to part with ballet than his family. He would only see his younger brother, Andrea, 45 years later, when he returned to the USSR with the New York City Ballet troupe.

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