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I Dreamed I Was a Ballerina Hardcover – October 1, 2001

18 customer reviews

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Editorial Reviews

Amazon.com Review

A young girl's discovery of ballet is combined with the magic of French Impressionist Edgar Degas's paintings to create a story as delicate and lovely as the ballerina herself. Drawn from the 1922 autobiography of prima ballerina Anna Pavlova, this reminiscence tells of her first trip to the ballet to see Sleeping Beauty with her mother. Her youthful words reflect the sweet wonder of the experience, as well as the gentle love between mother and child. The moment the breathless Pavlova voices her desire to dance on the stage one day, followed by her mother's response that she is "her silly little dear," is made all the more poignant by the reader's knowledge that this particular little girl's dream did come true.

Filled with the enchanting details of the ballet, and perfectly accompanied by the famous ballerina paintings of Degas, this is a book to be treasured by dancers, art lovers, and devotees of ballet alike. (Ages 4 to 8) --Emilie Coulter

From Publishers Weekly

The magic of royalty and ballet combine against an Edgar Degas backdrop for Anna Pavlova's I Dreamed I Was a Ballerina. Using simple language, the Russian dancer vividly describes the pleasure, awe and inspiration drawn from Sleeping Beauty, her first glimpse of the ballet.

Copyright 2002 Cahners Business Information, Inc.

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Product Details

  • Age Range: 8 - 12 years
  • Lexile Measure: 900L (What's this?)
  • Hardcover: 32 pages
  • Publisher: Atheneum; First Edition edition (October 1, 2001)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0689846762
  • ISBN-13: 978-0689846762
  • Product Dimensions: 11 x 8.6 x 0.4 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 15.5 ounces
  • Average Customer Review: 4.6 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (18 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #581,013 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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Customer Reviews

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

30 of 30 people found the following review helpful By Roz Levine on November 29, 2001
Format: Hardcover
Taken from her 1922 memoirs, Pages Of My Life, dancer Anna Pavlova tells of her first experience at the ballet as a little girl. Her simple and gentle words are full of imagery and passion as she relates the wonder of watching the Sleeping Beauty ballet...the sounds of Tchaikovsky's music, the mesmerizing beauty of the dancers, and the roar of the audience. On that thrilling afternoon her love affair with dance began, and a dream commenced that set the course of her life. Ms Pavlova's lovely text is enhanced by the magic and wonder of Edgar Degas' paintings. His artwork transports the reader back to this long ago performance, and together words and art bring that day to life. Perfect for youngsters 4-8, I Dreamed I Was A Ballerina includes short biographies of both Pavlova and Degas, to complete the story, and is a masterpiece to be treasured by aspiring ballerinas and artists, everywhere.
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9 of 9 people found the following review helpful By L. Stubbs on January 9, 2007
Format: Hardcover
Yes, this is a beautiful, moving story of a girl's dream come true. I bought it for my 6 year-old grandaughter who loves her ballet lessons. I hope the book will encourage her to pursue her own dreams, whatever they may be. This is an example of a classic in children's literature. It can be read again and again and has life lessons for the young and the old.
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6 of 6 people found the following review helpful By Loving Retirement on December 2, 2008
Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
I began taking my grandaughter to the ballet when she was 3 years old. By 5, she knew the stories and music to all the classics and began ballet lessons at the Washington Ballet. Now, at 7, during the holiday, she is dancing one of the leading children's roles in Septime Webre's Nutcracker.

I bought this book because I wanted to introduce her to the history of this beautiful art. Not only did she love the story, but, additionally, she was facinated by the Degas images and drawings. We ended up spending more time learning about "Impressionism" than Anna Pavlova. She loved the softness of the images and plied me with questions about the way Degas painted.

Because of that discussion, I bought her an additional book about "The Little Ballerina" statue that Degas fashioned. That led to my descriptions of The Louvre, the copy of the statue in The Metropolitan Museum and a promise that this summer, for her 8th birthday, I would take her to New York to see Swan Lake danced by the American Ballet Theater and the Metropolitan Museum to see the copy of "The Little Ballerina" statue by Degas.

I could never have imagined that this book would be so stimulating. The best part was sharing the story, answering her multiple questions, watching her enthusiasm while I read the story (even though she could have read it herself)and knowing that a child's curiousity was joyously working overtime.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful By doodle49686 on June 29, 2010
Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
This book was perfect for my daughter after her first ballet recital. The art is beautiful and it is well written overall. Being a (somewhat) biography added more credibility to the story. The only trouble we had with the book is that the fairy not invited to Sleeping Beauty's christening is called a "hag" so we had some explaining to do when we read it.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful By E. Hilton on October 31, 2007
Format: Hardcover
My 3-year-old great niece is really into ballet, and she loves having this book read to her. The story is so well written, I'm sure this book will continue to be one of her favorites for years to come.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful By Rakelle on June 2, 2013
Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
This book is an inspirational read for people who have a dream in there heart and the courage to pursue it.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful By love to read on May 31, 2009
Format: Hardcover
Beautiful pictures and a nice story...my daughter loves ballet and she really likes this book.
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Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
I was interested in Anna Pavlova because he name was mentioned several times in the book Husband's Secrets...it intrigued me so much I looked it up. I found the recipe mentioned in the book and made it !! So I also looked up any information on Anna and found this book. It is a children's book but loved the way presented and will send to my granddaughter who is a prima ballerina!! Rh dessert is easy and tasted delightful!! Try it/
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