"Ballet dancer and choreographer Rudolf Nureyev was born, the youngest child and only son to a peasant family of Tatar heritage, on March 17, 1938, in Irkutsk, Russia"
"Nureyev started dancing professionally as an extra at the local opera when he was 15. From there he landed a job with the corps de ballet and toured with them in Moscow. When Nureyev turned 17, he was accepted into the Leningrad Ballet School, where Alexander Ivanovich Pushkin became his teacher"
"In 1961, Nureyev and the Kirov company toured in Paris. June 16. Rudolf Nureyev “chose liberty” and demanded political asylum at Le Bourget airport instead of boarding an airplane to take him back to the USSR. He joined the Ballets du Marquis de Cuevas the next day."
"In 1983, he was appointed director of the Paris Opera Ballet, where, as well as directing, he continued to dance and to promote younger dancers. His artistic directorship of the Paris Opera Ballet was a great success, lifting the company out of a dark period. "
"Rudolf Nureyev died at the age of 54 in Paris. He was above all a stickler for classical technique, and his mastery of it made him a model for an entire generation of dancers. "