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Ballet Master Eugene Polyakov Dead at 53

November 3, 1996

PARIS (AP) _ Eugene Polyakov, a Bolshoi-trained ballet master who assisted Rudolf Nureyev at the Paris Opera Ballet, has died, a newspaper reported. He was 53.

Opera officials could not immediately be reached, but the daily Le Monde said Polyakov died Oct. 24. The paper gave neither his cause nor place of death.

Polyakov was born in Moscow on April 27, 1943, and trained at the Bolshoi Ballet before leaving the Soviet Union in 1976 to perform at the Fenice in Venice, Italy. A year later, he formed his own dance company there, Viva la Danza.

In 1978, Polyakov moved to Florence to direct the Teatro Communale, where he stayed until Nureyev summoned him to Paris in 1983.

Polyakov and Nureyev ``spoke the same language, the same language of the body,″ Le Monde said.

Polyakov returned to Florence after Nureyev’s death in 1992.

He always preferred the title ``ballet master″ to ``choreographer,″ believing the later too technical and pompous, Le Monde said.

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