Chapt er 19
Needless to linger upon the Neapolitan début of Lina Varsovina! She came only to conquer; in a single night, like Taglioni bef ore her, she leaped into the light of fame. The ballet Les Eljes might have been especially designed to display to the best advantage her delicacy and purity of movement, her eerie charm of personality.
Rosing, the crafty showman, had talked little of his prodigy, preferring her to be judged on her merits, with the result that the more influential critics were unanimous in expressing enthusiastic approval.
"Mlle. Varsovina is the essence of all that is supple and graceful; this grace, however, has also an air of originality, even of strangeness, quite unlike that of any other dancer, and furthermore, the convincing quality of her technical perfection already proves her to be an accomplished artist. ..
"This young lady—and she is, we understand, very young indeed—established herself from the start as a spiritual dancer with a prodigious command of technique . . . she succeeds in being at the same time delicate and powerful. . .
"Mlle. Varsovina reminded us of nothing so much as those fairies of Scotland, favorites of Walter Scott, who roam in the moonlight near mysterious fountains with necklaces of dewdrops and girdles of silver. . .
"Her vivacity, her astonishing agility, are less remarkable than the mysterious, almost ethereal qual-