Kevin Flanagan describes stage 2 of his Quest . . .
This week I launched my quest to turn my books into bestsellers.
On Wednesday things started happening.
I set about looking for photos for the book I have just finished on ballet dancer Rudolf Nureyev. For very few people know that in my youth I was a ballet dancer.
How did that happen?
I fell in love with ballet after taking my first date to see the legendary Fonteyn and Nureyev dance at the Royal Opera House in London in 1967. The date did not work out but my love of ballet was born. After I finished at university I trained full-time to become a ballet dancer aged 22 years old; quite a brave thing to do in those days. It was a hard road. Ballet dancers usually start aged 5 or 6 so I had an uphill struggle.
I eventually succeeded and my book “Dancing with Nureyev” is the story of my journey. I still needed photos of Fonteyn & Nureyev taken in the 1960’s. Getting permission would be hard as most of the photographers would be dead – or so I thought. But I was enthused by my Quest and attacked the task.
First I googled the famous ballet photographer Keith Money, who had taken some of the most iconic photos of the two dancers. Imagine my surprise when an address in Kerry came up on his website. There was a phone number so I dialed it and the legendary photographer answered the phone himself!
The next 90 minutes passed in a flash as I talked to him about Fonteyn & Nureyev, who had both been personal friends of his. We reminisced about London in the swinging sixties and compared notes on performances we had both seen. It was pure HEAVEN!
He even guided me as to how to take select photos; so my book will feature pics from the master photographer himself. So Mission No.1 accomplished!
For those who have never seen Fonteyn & Nureyev here is a small sample of their dancing to whet your appetite. It is old footage, taken in mid 1960’s but still captures the electrifying magnetism that set the world alight.
I will keep you posted when my book “Dancing with Nureyev” is out.