Department or Program


Primary Wellesley Thesis Advisor

Gurminder Bhogal


The Ballet Russes dominated the avant-garde world of early twentieth century Paris with ballets that brought together the greatest artistic and musical minds of the time. Their ascent into stardom was realized through the hard work of figures like Igor Stravinsky, Erik Satie, Pablo Picasso, and their founder Serge Diaghilev. Alongside these figures, patrons like the Comtesse Greffulhe, the Princesse de Polignac, Misia Sert, and Coco Chanel contributed greatly to the ballet troupe in four different ways. Yet very few scholars have recognized these women for their significant contributions to the musical, artistic, and financial aspects of the Ballets Russes. Their involvement included work on productions such as Parade, Les Noces, and Le Train Bleu. My thesis explores the diverse roles held by these women and the ways they affected the legacy of the Ballets Russes.