Maria Tallchief was a Native American ballerina and the first major prima ballerina. She danced with several ballet companies. They included the New York City Ballet and the Ballet Russe de Monte Carlo. She became the first American ballerina to dance with the Paris Opera Ballet. One of Tallchief’s most famous roles was dancing as the Sugar Plum Fairy in The Nutcracker. After retiring from dancing, Tallchief cofounded the Chicago Ballet School with her sister Marjorie, who was also a famous ballerina.
Maria Tallchief was born Elizabeth Marie Tallchief in Fairfax, Oklahoma, on January 24, 1925. Her father, Alexander, was a member of the Osage Nation. Her mother, Mary Porter, was of Scottish-Irish descent. Tallchief’s mother enjoyed music and dancing....Read more
- January 24, 1925
- April 11, 2013
- Ballet director;
- Tall Chief, Elizabeth Marie