People of dance

Zdjęcie: Olga Sawicka

Olga Sawicka, fot. A. Bernard

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Olga Sawicka – Polish prima ballerina. A graduate of ballet studio at the Grand Theatre in Poznań. In 1947–1949, she performed in the Poznań Opera, among other as Sleeping Beauty in “Od bajki do bajki” choreographed by Jerzy Kapliński. From September 1949 to January 1953, she worked in the Silesian Opera in Bytom, at first as a coryphée, and since 1950 as a soloist. From February 1953 till the end of 1961, she was a soloist of the Warsaw Opera; she danced all leading roles in the repertoire of the time. In 1954 she played in a feature film “Uczta Baltazara” by Jerzy Zarzycki.

In 1956 she was invited to Helsinki, and in 1957 to Stockholm and Oslo; there she danced a fragment of “Romeo and Juliet” and Odette’s Adagio. In 1958 she was granted a scholarship in Paris where she studied classical dance with Lubov Egorova and Victor Gsovsky. Invited by Lifar, she also took part in a gala ballet concert in Salle Pleyel. She also performed with a French group Étoiles de Paris, founded by Milorad Miskovitch. In Monte Carlo she dance in a gala soirée together with Margot Fonteyn and Ivette Chauviré.

In spring 1959 she came back to Monte Carlo and Paris with the Warsaw Opera’s ballet, as Amelia in Mazepa. She came back to Warsaw and in summer 1959 she represented Poland, together with Stanisław Szymański and Bogdan Bulder, at the 7th World Youth Festival in Vienna. In 1960 she received a master scholarship at the Bolshoi Theatre in Moscow. There she danced Giselle and visited Tblisi, Yerevan and Vilnius.

In 1962, after the Warsaw Opera had been reorganized under a new name the Teatr Wielki, Olga Sawicka did not sign a contract and left to Paris for two years where she played in stage performances and took part in programmes of French TV. After returning to Poland, she did not want to perform in Warsaw. In 1963 she became prima ballerina of the Poznań Opera where she performed until 1974. Her return to Poznań coincided with the nomination of Conrad Drzewiecki to ballet director. In Poznań, Olga Sawicka was again excellent as Juliet and Giselle. In the Poznań Opera she also performed in new choreographies by Drzewiecki. She finished her stage career in 1974. In the season that follows she was a ballet director of the Musical Theatre in Poznań.

Most important parts: Sleeping Beauty (Od bajki do bajki), Zosia (Cagliostro w Warszawie), Golden Duck (Złota Kaczka), Maria (The Fountain of Bakhchisaray), Swanhilde (Coppelia), Juliet (Romeo and Juliet), Odette (Swan Lake), Queen of the Underworld (Pan Twardowski), Amelia (Mazepa), Giselle (Giselle), Queen of Stone Mountain (The Tale of Stone Flower); by Conrad Drzewiecki :soloist in ballet Valses nobles et sentimentales, La Valse,Bohemian Rhapsody, Taglioni in Pas de quatre, Ophelia and Juliet in Improwizacje do Szekspira, Muza in Muzyka uroczysta, title role in The Firebird, principal soloist in Divertimento, in Adageto from Fifth Symphony and in ballet Les Biches.

Biography–extended interview: Life with dance. Interview with prima ballerina Olga Sawicka by Stefan Drajewski, Wydawnictwo Poznańskie 2009, ISBN: 9788371776670

Olga Sawicka, fot. A. Bernard
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