He was a tastemaker, a hustler—and a genius. The spirit of musical innovation and artistic collaboration he nurtured—and his mandate, "Astound me!"—made him the undisputed center of the dance world from 1910 to 1929.
And the musical world. For thanks to him we have Ravel's Daphnis and Chloe, de Falla's The Three Cornered Hat, Satie's Parade, Respighi's The Magic Toyshop, and the Stravinsky triple-crown, The Firebird, Petrouchka, and The Rite of Spring.
In this hour, the first in a two-part salute to the legendary ballet impresario, Sergei Diaghilev.