Pécour [Pécourt], Louis Guillaume
- Meredith Ellis Little
(b ?1651; d April 11, 1729). French dancing-master and choreographer . He was one of the finest dancers working under the celebrated royal choreographer Pierre Beauchamp. He is said in one source to have made his début as a dancer in a repeat performance of Lully’s Cadmus et Hermione in 1674. When, on Lully's death in 1687, Beauchamp left the Opéra, Pécour was appointed in his place. He gave up dancing in about 1703 but he held the post of ballet-master and choreographer at the Opéra until his death. His tutelage produced such outstanding dancers as La Fontaine, Subligny, Guiot, Prevost and Menese among the women and Blondy, Ballon, Dumoulin and Marcel among the men. He is credited with changing the ‘S’ figure of the Minuet to a ‘Z’, an innovation that helped keep the dancers in a proper relationship to each other and to the figure.
Many of his dances were recorded in the Beauchamp-Feuillet system of dance notation and can to a certain extent be re-created. Both the floor pattern and the steps are given in the notation. The style may be derived from a study of Pierre Rameau's ...