CULTURE


Leyla Vakilova – great Azerbaijani ballet dancer, choreographer and talented teacher

Baku, May 26, AZERTAC

Leyla Vakilova – an outstanding Azerbaijani ballet dancer, choreographer, talented teacher and the People’s Artist of the Azerbaijan SSR was born on January 29, 1927, in Baku.

Vakilova took her first ballet lessons at the Baku State School of Choreography.

Her teacher was first Azerbaijani ballerina - Qamar Almaszade. It was with great love and care that she treated the talent of her student, not just handing over her experience to her, but also trying to foster unique individuality in Vakilova.

The Swan Lake was the first serious work of Vakilova, a kind of test of strength. In this ballet, she played both of the main female roles - Odette, the White Swan, and Odile, the Black Swan.

In 1945, Leyla Vakilova left for Moscow to gain experience in the field of ballet at the Moscow State Academy of Choreography.

After returning to Baku in 1946, she made her first ballet performance as Tao Khoa in The Red Poppy by R. Glière at the Azerbaijan State Academic Opera and Ballet Theatre where she worked for the next 30 years.

The dancer performed all classical and national repertoire.

Leyla Vakilova created expressive images in the national ballet, combining classical dance technique and particularities of Azerbaijani folk choreography in performing art.

Her early performances in Azerbaijani ballets by A. Badalbayli, S. Hajibayov, G. Garayev, F. Amirov and A. Malikov brought her great fame, which was recognized by the awarding of the Order of Lenin to her.

She also appeared in a number of films. In 1967, Vakilova was granted the title of the People’s Artist of the USSR. She also became head of the Azerbaijan State Folk Song and Dance Ensemble founded by her teacher G. Almaszade.

From 1953, she taught ballet at the Baku School of Choreography.

In 1972, at the age of 45, Leyla Vakilova retired from ballet, even though she continued her teaching career at the School of Choreography until her death in 1999.

She passed away on 21 February 1999 and was buried at the Alley of Honor.

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