Who was Sergei Diaghilev?

   Sergei Pavlovich Diaghilev was a Russian ballet impresario. Born Selische, Russia, Mar. 19, 1872. Died Venice, Italy, Aug. 19, 1929.
   Diaghilev founded the Ballets Russes, one of the world's greatest ballet companies. Working with the finest dancers, painters, and composers of his generation, he introduced the modern concept of ballet as a dynamic integration of dance, design, and music. He produced many of the most important ballets in the standard repertoire today and established the custom of presenting several short works, rather than a single full-length ballet, in one program.
   Diaghilev was educated in Russia and was the founder of the influential Russian magazine Mir Iskusstva ("The World of Art"). He produced ballets for the Russian imperial theaters but was dismissed because of his unconventional staging method. He went to Paris and, in 1909, organized the Bal­lets Russes. Although Diaghilev could not paint, choreograph, or compose music, his taste and imagination attracted distinguished creative artists to work with him in the Ballets Russes. By inspiring their best efforts he made a lasting contribution to modern ballet.