Ballets Suédois (1920–25) By Dorf, Samuel N.
Rolf de Maré’s Ballets Suédois was active from 1920 to 1925. It was the chief artistic rival to Diaghilev’s Ballets Russes, and de Maré was often referred to as the Swedish Serge Diaghilev. With Jean Börlin as chief choreographer, the company created twenty-four ballets in collaboration with prominent modern artists and composers, including Fernand Léger, Giorgio de Chirico, Pablo Picasso, Francis Picabia, Erik Satie, Darius Milhaud, and Cole Porter. When first launched, the troupe performed ballets in a style similar to the Ballets Russes, but de Maré’s interest in the visual arts and the vibrancy of modern, contemporary life resulted in a greater emphasis on abstraction and popular idioms in both the design and choreography of Ballets Suédois productions.