Just over two months ago Richard Cragun, an astounding actor-dancer of great charisma and grace, sadly passed away. He was 67 years old.
In 1974 at Milan’s Teatro alla Scala the 37-year-old Carla Fracci danced a series of 20 performances of John Field’s Swan Lake with three different partners: Rudolf Nureyev, Roberto Fascilla and Richard Cragun.
Cragun, who died last month at 67, was the star of the Stuttgart Ballet company, and he charmed the Milanese audience with his noble bearing and physical beauty.
A true prince.
Phởtos: Carla Fracci and Richard Cragun in Swan Lake, Teatro alla Scala 1974 — collection of Carlo Orlandi… [continue reading]
Richard Cragun’s funeral was held yesterday in Rio De Janeiro, two days after the dancer’s death on Monday. His friend Peter Rosenwald was there:
Richard was a close and exceptional friend of mine and of so many others. That he was one of the great dancers of our time needs no comment. But his humanity, his endless kindness, his unwillingness to adopt the vanities of ‘stardom’ when he was very much a star, make him exceptional.
The most moving moment at yesterday’s cremation ceremony in Rio came when the flower covered coffin began to move away and Richards friends and admirers, led by Marcia Haydee, stood, applauded and cried out “Bravo” as they had so many times at the end of his magnificent performances.… [continue reading]
I honour your passing with these great words by Auden:
“The stars are not wanted now: put out every one;
Pack up the moon and dismantle the sun;
Pour away the ocean and sweep up the wood.
For nothing now can ever come to any good.”
Goodbye, with love,
Richard Cragun, one of the most important dancers of the 20th century has died at 67. His legendary partnership with Marcia Haydée, the ground-breaking work at Stuttgart Ballet with John Cranko, and his beauty and virile strength as a dancer, will earn him a permenant place in dance history.
Yesterday, August 6, he suffered a seizure triggered by a lung infection, and died in Rio de Janeiro soon after being admitted to hospital. His ex-partner in life and in dance, Marcia Haydée, said,
Richard was one of the best dancers in the world. Even after our separation, we were the best of friends; I could call him anytime.
He was born in California in 1944. He studied tap-dance and ballet but also attended the Banff School of Fine Arts in Canada, and he continued to draw all his life. … [continue reading]
In 1987 a two-part television programme called The Ballerinas featured Carla Fracci, with some of the top male dancers of the period, in a series of reconstructions putting various ballets and their interpretors in an historical context. Fracci was an amazingly youthful 51 when she danced these extracts.
Dance Magazine critic John Gruen wrote:
The nineteenth century clings to Carla Fracci like an invisible mantle — her aura, her look, her demeanor suggest everyone’s conception of the romantic ballerina. How fitting that this great poetic artist should portray some of her most fabled predecessors — the very ballerinas that, like Fracci, were the embodiment of romantic fragility and lyric classicism.
In The Ballerinas, a sumptuously produced two-part ballet drama, Fracci places her rare artistry in the service of dance history as she recreates roles first premiered by such luminous ballerinas as Marie Taglioni, Emma Livry, Carlotta Grisi, Fanny Elssler, Giuseppina Bozzacchi, Carlotta Brianza, Matilde Kschessinska, Anna Pavlova, Tamara Karsavina and Olga Spessitzeva.… [continue reading]