Surrealism; the birth of the word adopted by a movement.
March 24, 2013 5:24 PM   Subscribe

In 1917 Guillaume Apollinare first coined the word Surrealism in the program notes for the ballet Parade; partly reproduced here.
It was an extraordinary gathering of enormous talents with the set, curtain and costumes by Pablo Picasso (these pictures seldom seen and never published)
The scenario was by Jean Cocteau; and the score by Erik Satie.
It was first performed on 18 May by Sergei Diaghilev's Ballets Russes.
The audience booed and hissed, and some in the crowd even started throwing oranges at the orchestra.
posted by adamvasco (8 comments total) 28 users marked this as a favorite
Just amazing. The glimpses of the reproduction make me want to watch the entire ballet.
posted by xingcat at 5:28 PM on March 24, 2013 [1 favorite]

That happens to be one of my favorite Satie pieces.

But it features a typewriter, a car horn, a pistol loaded with blanks, and other unusual pieces of percussion. I can see that the audiences of the time might not really understand.
posted by Chocolate Pickle at 5:44 PM on March 24, 2013

Rite of Spring was booed the first time it was performed, too. But now it's acknowledged to be a masterpiece. It takes time for people to learn to understand the really new stuff.
posted by Chocolate Pickle at 5:45 PM on March 24, 2013 [2 favorites]

For anyone in NYC, there is a wonderful exhibit of surrealist drawings at The Morgan Library thru April 21st; Drawing Surrealism.

Nice catalog too.
posted by R. Mutt at 5:56 PM on March 24, 2013 [2 favorites]

R.Mutt that just cost me $40!
posted by adamvasco at 6:09 PM on March 24, 2013

(Off topic, but I have to tell someone... A few weeks ago I was lost in a Parisian graveyard. In the course of finding my people I came across Apollinaire's tomb. Then Satie's. Then Breton's. What a great day.)

Bring on the dancing horses.
posted by artof.mulata at 6:14 PM on March 24, 2013 [4 favorites]

Marvelous post, as usual, adamvasco, thanks for the education and delight.
posted by nickyskye at 6:36 PM on March 24, 2013 [1 favorite]

throwing oranges at the orchestra

They may not have known much about art, but they knew what they liked.

ba-dump tah!
posted by CynicalKnight at 7:00 PM on March 24, 2013 [1 favorite]

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