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Bloomsbury Ballerina


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Accessible and engaging biography of a colourful, charismatic woman whose story has never been told. Appealing to devotees of ballet (an ever-growing number as it becomes trendy once again). Will appeal to fans of quirky and unusual biographies, anyone interested in the Bloomsbury set (interest has been reignited by the success of 'The Hours'), and in British cultural and economic history. Full of surprising encounters: Lydia and Picasso, Lydia and Stravinsky, Lydia and Virginia Woolf (and an excruciatingly embarrassing social faux pas), and Lydia and Maynard Keynes' unconventional sex life!

About the Author

Judith Mackrell is a writer and the Dance critic for the Guardian. She was the ghostwriter for Darcey Bussell's Life in Dance. She lives in London with her husband and two sons.Previous titles:Life in Dance (1998)


"Mackrell's enthralling biography restores Lydia Lopokova to her rightful position centre-stage." -- Michael Arditti DAILY MAIL "Bloomsbury Ballerina is a compelling account of the extraordinary life and times of an unforgettable woman. Mackrell is to be congratulated." -- Henrietta Garnett LITERARY REVIEW "the English took Lydia Lopokova to their hearts and so Judith Mackrell is right that she merits a biography." -- Duncan Fallowell DAILY TELEGRAPH "Mackrell shows us exactly what made Lopokova one the last century's 'true originals.'" -- Frances Wilson SUNDAY TIMES "Judith Mackrell. is brilliant at making the reader see why Lopokova matters" -- Kathryn Hughes THE GUARDIAN "How shrewd and kind of Mackrell to extricate Lopokova from so many decades as the snubbed alien in Bloomsbury footnotes." -- Veronica Horwell NEW STATESMAN "Mackrell's unfailingly vivacious and scholarly biography pays splendid tribute" -- Rupert Christiansen SUNDAY TELEGRAPH "she was, as Mackrell concludes, one of the 20th century's 'true originals' and this narrative tells us exactly why" -- Clement Crisp FINANCIAL TIMES "What is successfully researched and confidently told is Lopokova's impressive dancing career" -- Diana Souhami THE INDEPENDENT "admirably researched. enthralling" -- Mary Clarke Dancing Times "colourful and well-researched" -- Robert Giddings Tribune "Lopokova led a life encompassed by ballet, Russian revolution and the Bloomsbury Group, every disparate strand woven skilfully together in Mackrell's thorough and absorbing biography" The Good Book Guide "Judith Mackrell, in this masterly biography, shows us why we should remember her (Lopokova).. writing as fine as one could hope to encounter." -- Judith Flanders TLS "this biographer is elegant and true about a seminal figure. who has long lacked a proper historian-critic. Now, she has found one." -- James Woodall Dance Europe "excellent" -- Jonathan Sale CAM summer round-up selection - "magnificent" -- Kathryn Hughes The Guardian "Mackrell has done an excellent job of putting her back in the spotlight again" -- Marianne Brace Independent on Sunday

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