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Tamara Toumanova
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    (March 2, 1919-May 29, 1996)
    Born in Tyumen, Siberia, Russian Federation
    Died in Santa Monica, California
    'Baby Ballerina' of the Ballet Russe de Monte Carlo in the 1930s
    Protegee of George Balanchine
    She was born on a train.
    Her Paris Opera performance at nine-years-old led one critic to describe the scene as simultaneously 'astonishing' and 'frightening.'
    Mom Eugenia was such a 'mother hen' that she'd pray over the spot on stage where her daughter would have to do a series of whipping turns called fouettes.
    She divorced American producer Casey Robinson, a man sixteen years her senior.
    During the Russian Revolution her father became separated from the family, with Tamara not meeting him until she was eighteen months old.
    A renowned raven-haired and dark-eyed beauty, she earned the nickname of 'The Black Pearl of Russian Ballet.'
    She was acclaimed for bringing excitement to the classical dance stage.

Credit: Black Chic

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