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Rudolf Nureyev’s 50th Celebrated at the Met Gala

June 27, 1988

NEW YORK (AP) _ Rudolf Nureyev will belatedly celebrate his 50th birthday tonight in the company of fellow ballet greats such as Dame Margot Fonteyn and some not-so- greats, such as the prima ballerina Miss Piggy of ″Swine Lake″ fame.

The Paris Opera Ballet, directed by Nureyev since 1983, will perform at the Metropolitan Opera House in honor of the dancer’s birthday, albeit three months and 10 days after he reached half a century.

Nureyev’s impact was first felt in 1961, when he bolted from the Kirov Ballet, a Soviet company visiting Paris at the time, and defected.

Nureyev is credited with breaking molds within tradition and blending a sensuality with disciplined virtuosity.

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