- Maureen Needham
(b Milan, Nov 5, 1777; d Como, Feb 11, 1871). Italian dancer and choreographer. In 1794 he became first dancer at the Teatro dei Nobili, Pisa, where his father Carlo was ballet-master. After touring Italy, 1796–8, he went to Paris to study with J.-F. Coulon, making his début at the Opéra in La caravane (1799). He worked at the Royal Opera, Stockholm, in 1803–4, and at the Hoftheater, Vienna, in 1805, before undertaking an extended European tour. Taglioni’s importance lies mainly in his choreography for the premières, all at the Paris Opéra, of Auber’s Le dieu et la bayadère (1830) and Gustave III (1833), Meyerbeer’s Robert le diable (1831) and Les Huguenots (1836), and Halévy’s La Juive (1835). That for Robert, including the famous ‘Scène des nonnes’ in which 50 dancers dressed in white wafted through the ghostly cloister, made theatrical history: the first ...