Cléo de Mérode holds an honorable position in world culture history.
French dancer is known not only because her skills in choreography. People say about Cléo a lot of things and define what is true and what is false isn’t an easy task.
It’s not a
secret, that Belgian king Leopold II was captivated by her talent and charm,
the most famous artists of that time wanted to draw her portrait and the dancer
herself enjoyed posing in front of camera.
Cléo was born in Paris in family of Austrian painter and Belgian ancestral aristocrat. The girl, who was fond of dances since her childhood, stepped on a big stage at the age of 11.
Choreographic debut of this talented kid ignited a furor among public. For her performance, young dancer chose a hairstyle that remained her signature until the end of her life: hair with a central hairline slicked back, hiding her ears.
12 years after Cléo was performing in Bordo, where the king of Belgium noted her.
Though he wasn’t a big fan of art, the man became devoted fan of this beauty and didn’t miss a single concert of hers.
It is said,
that the monarch was ready to relinquish his power in order to link his fate
with the dancer, who was 40 years younger than he.
Despite all the rumors about their passionate romance, Cléo herself always disapproved her link with the king, saying that his only gesture of attention she accepted was bouquet of roses.
However, it was dancer’s request that made Leopold build capital metro.
For Cléo de Mérode, who left her motherland, all the stages in European capitals were open. In Russia she became the first ballerina who performed in pair with male dancer.
Her divine beauty was portrayed by painters. She was photographed by the best photographers of that time. Postcards and postage stamps with her image were popular all over the world.
returned to Paris when she was close to 50, found out that public applauded to
the new generation, while she was left aboard.
The ballerina left again, but this time forever. Having settled in the south-west of France, she actively became engaged in charity.
After release of Simone de Beauvoir’s book The Second Sex in which the writer mentioned de Mérode, the ballerina sued her for that. And the dancer proved she had never dated men because of money or any other ulterior motives. Cléo de Mérode lived a long and fascinating life and died at the age of 91. So the next generations remember her she left her memoirs.
Based on materials: wnews.pub