In the 1920s and 1930s ballet was not yet popular in the United States, but American audiences were fascinated with “toe dancing.” (This was a combination of Pointe with acrobatics and stunts.) Another popular dance was “toe-tapping” known today as Tap Dancing.
In America, great dancers performed on Broadway and in Hollywood and people loved to do all kinds of social dances but when it came to Ballet, Americans only had the few touring troupes from Europe and Russia.
All this changed when George Balanchine, a famous dancer with the Ballet Russes, came to America after the death of Diaghilev, and decided to form his own company. Balanchine saw Fred Astaire and Ginger Rogers in the movies and thought that there must be people who could become great ballet dancers in America. In 1934, he founded the School of American Ballet in New York City along with the dance company that would become the New York City Ballet. Balanchine created many new, interesting ballets and restaged many of the classics. Thanks to Balanchine, The Nutcracker has become a holiday tradition.
National American Ballet, August 20, 1924
Elsie Robinson, June 30, 1925
Swan Lake, 1924
Clothes in the wind, June 30, 1925
Russian dancer Desiree Lubowska, June 30, 1925
Elves in the forest, August 1924
Miss Dorothy Brautigam, June 30, 1925,
At the camp, August 20, 1924
Russian dancer Desiree Lubowska. 1924
Down the river. June 30, 1925
Jump in the forest. June 30, 1925
Dancers of the National American Ballet. June 30, 1925