People of dance

Zdjęcie: Janina Pudełek

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Janina Pudełek (1930-2004) – ballet historian and theorist. She graduated from the Faculty of Polish Studies at the Warsaw University and in drama studies from the State Drama School in Warsaw. In 1952–1953, she was the secretary of the editorial team of “Pamiętnik Teatralny”. For over 30 years she was responsible for Muscial Theatre Department at the Theatre Museum.

For many years she was a teacher at the Fryderyk Chopin Academy of Music in Warsaw. From 1997 she was an Associate Professor at the Faculty of Music Education (Department of Music Education); she was made professor in 1984 based on the thesis on Warsaw ballet in 1867–1915. As the students of the Academy of Music (currently: the University of Music) recall: “she gave dance and ballet history lectures from the very beginning of the faculty of ballet pedagogy at the Academy. Her extensive knowledge allowed the generations of ballet teachers to know interesting stories about ballet and not only to learn boring facts. She was a supervisor of theses, often rewarded at various competitions”.

She collaborated with Taniec magazine; she wrote reviews of ballet performances for Teatr magazine, she also published in ballet programmes of the Teatr Wielki. She is the author of ballet librettos: ballet version of the opera Hrabina (choreography by Henryk Konwiński) and Devil’s Tricks by Witold Gruca. From 1970 she worked as an academic editor of the “Dancers” section for the Encyclopaedia of Music (PWM Edition). She created a catalogue of the Warsaw theatres’s repertoires from 1821–1835; a catalogue of Polish singers and conductors from 1821–1835; and a catalogue of the Polish Musical Theatres’ repertoires after the 2nd World War.

She organized exhibitions dedicated to the history of ballet and international scientific seminars. She is the author of numerous publications on the history of ballet, including Warsaw romantic ballet 1802–1866 (1968), From the history of ballet (1981), Secrets of ballet art. On aesthetics and anatomy of ballet (1995), an entry Ballet in Encyclopaedia of the 20th Century Polish Culture. Theatr.

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