Tribute by Frédéric Mitterrand, Minister of Culture and Communication, to Roland Petit
With Roland Petit disappears one of the major choreographers of the twentieth
He who directed for 26 years, from 1972, the Ballets de
Marseilles, made his first dance steps at the age of 9, he is
the son of Rose Repetto, the famous costume designer at the Opera.
Trained at the Paris Opera, he engaged from the Liberation in a
choreography career. Very quickly, with the foundation of the ballets of
Champs-Elysées in 1945 and the Ballets de Paris in 1948,
The creation of new designs is a huge success worldwide.
He built a work of great wealth, bringing together in particular the
most inventive creators of his time like Yves Saint-Laurent and
Christian Dior for costumes, Picasso, Niki de Saint-Phalle and Max
Ernst for the sets, Prévert and Anouilh for the booklets, Gabriel Yared
and Henri Dutilleux for music. His ballets testify to the
the theatricality and sensuality of his universe. Among his masterpieces,
The young man and death, on a
booklet by Jean Cocteau, created by Jean Babilée and Nathalie Philippart, The
wolf, Carmen and Notre-Dame de Paris.
With his muse Renée Jeanmaire, known as Zizi, with whom he forms a couple
mythical, they write together some of the most beautiful pages
contemporary music hall, whose traditions he revisits
of humour than fantasy. His work is inscribed in gold letters in
repertoire of the Paris Opera, which made it an exceptional
tribute in September and October 2010.