Ballets Russes: A couple dancing (c.1939)
Amateur filmmaker Murray-Will’s acquaintance with Ballets Russes members allowed him to capture unique images of one of the world’s greatest dance companies.
In this clip, Tamara Toumanova, wearing a light coloured headpiece, lifts her head to camera. She and a male dancer together perform a brief routine on the grass outside of Murray-Will’s beach house. In a slow motion sequence, the pair continues their routine. The camera then frames the couple from the torso upward as it captures the final part of their dance again.
Murray-Will often filmed parts of the impromptu outdoor dances in slow motion. His fascination with beauty and movement is strikingly evident in these sequences. As well as demonstrating the agility, grace and skill of these world-class dancers, the slow motion images also become detailed studies of the human form.