Stravinsky - Four Ballets


When the impresario Sergei Diaghilev first heard Stravinsky’s music in St. Petersburg in 1909 it was a turning point for them both. For Stravinsky the commission to write a ballet for Diaghilev’s Ballets Russes in Paris propelled him on to the international stage. For Diaghilev it was the beginning of a partnership that would produce the ballets by which he is best remembered. The Firebird, premiered in 1910, was an instant success and was followed by Petrushka in 1911 but it was Stravinsky’s third ballet for Diaghilev that was to go down in history. The Rite of Spring was so radically modern for its time that it nearly caused a riot at its premiere.

Stravinsky quickly turned to a new ballet subject, Les Noces, but it was not to receive its premiere until 1923. Stravinsky said:

When I first played Les Noces to Diaghilev... he wept and said it was the most beautiful and the most purely Russian creation of our Ballet. I think he did love Les Noces more than any other work of mine. That is why it is dedicated to him.

Programme details

9.15am: Registration

9.30am: The Firebird

10.45am: Coffee/tea

11.15am: Petrushka

12.30pm: Lunch

2.00pm: The Rite of Spring

3.15pm: Coffee/tea

3.45pm: Les Noces

5.00pm: Course disperses


Description Costs
Tuition - in-person attendance £80.00
Tuition - virtual attendance £80.00
Baguette Lunch £5.50
Hot Lunch £15.50


If you are in receipt of a UK state benefit you may be eligible for a reduction of 50% of tuition fees.

If you do not qualify for the concessionary fee but are experiencing financial hardship, you may still be eligible for financial assistance.

Concessionary fees for short courses


Prof Marina Frolova-Walker


Prof. MARINA FROLOVA-WALKER is Professor of Music History in the Faculty of Music at the University of Cambridge and a Fellow of Clare College. She studied musicology at the Moscow Conservatoire, receiving her doctorate in 1994. Before moving to Cambridge, she taught at the Moscow Conservatoire College, the University of Ulster, Goldsmiths College London and University of Southampton. Her principal fields of research are German Romanticism, Russian and Soviet music and nationalism in music.


Accommodation is not included in the price, but if you wish to stay with us the night before the course, then please contact our Residential Centre.

Accommodation in Rewley House - all bedrooms are modern, comfortably furnished and each room has tea and coffee making facilities, Freeview television, and Free WiFi and private bath or shower rooms.  Please contact our Residential Centre on +44 (0) 1865 270362 or email for details of availability and discounted prices.

IT requirements

You can opt to attend this hybrid teaching event either online (via a livestream) or in person at Rewley House, Oxford. You will be given the option of how you wish to attend during the enrolment process. You can only pick one option. If your preferred attendance format is fully booked, you can email us to be put on the waiting list.

For those joining us online

The University of Oxford uses Microsoft Teams for our learning environment. If you’re attending online, you’ll be able to see and hear the speakers, and to submit questions via the Teams interface. Joining instructions will be sent out prior to the start date. We recommend that you join the session at least 10-15 minutes prior to the start time – just as you might arrive a bit early at our lecture theatre for an in-person event.

If you have not used the Microsoft Teams app before, once you click the joining link you will be invited to download it (this is free). Once you have downloaded the app, please test before the start of your course. If you are using a laptop or desktop computer, you will also be offered the option of connecting using a web browser. If you connect via a web browser, Chrome is recommended.

Please note that this course will not be recorded.