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September 15, 2019

Vintage Photographs of 12-Year-Old Brigitte Bardot in Mrs. Bourgat’s Ballet Class, Paris in 1946

Brigitte Bardot was born on September 28,1934 into a wealthy Parisian family. Her father, Louis Bardot, was an industrialist, but also, importantly, a poet and an amateur filmmaker; her mother, Anne-Marie, was a beautiful society woman who was keen on fashion and ballet.

Bardot, for her part, would have liked to be a dancer or a model. Her ballet training was valuable in more ways than one. For a start it gave Bardot her distinctive, graceful posture and walk. She was evidently gifted, winning a prize at the Conservatoire in 1948.

One of her teachers was Boris Kniaseff, a Russian émigré who had devised special exercises for dancers, designed to develop their muscles while keeping their legs slim. Bardot was one of his best pupils – he also taught Leslie Caron. However, although, like many little girls, Bardot had dreamt of becoming a ballerina, she abandoned ballet quickly, after one engagement on the transatlantic liner De Grasse in 1950.

Below are some of black and white photographs of Brigitte Bardot taken by Boris Lipnitzki while attending in Mrs. Bourgat’s ballet class on the Rue Spontini, Paris in 1946.

(Photos by Boris Lipnitzki)


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