Famous Female Ballerinas People

Famous Female Ballerinas

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List of famous female ballerinas, featuring bios and photos when available. This female ballerinas list contains the most prominent and top females known for being ballerinas. The female ballerinas of note are listed by their level of prominence, and you can be sorted by various bits of information like date of birth or birthplace. There are thousand of females working as ballerinas in the world, but this list highlights only the notable ones.

Everything from Suzanne Farrell to Eleonora Abbagnato is included on this list.

While this isn't a list of all female ballerinas, it does answer the questions "Who are the most famous female ballerinas in the world?" and "Who are the best female ballerinas?"

The most notable female ballerinas in history and today are shown below. Enjoy this list of well-known, leading female ballerinas. If you want to share these historic female ballerinas you can use one of the social media icons at the top or bottom of the page. (112 items)


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  1. 1

    Diana Vishneva is a Russian ballet dancer who performs as a principal dancer with both the Mariinsky Ballet and the American Ballet Theatre. Vishneva was born in St. Petersburg and was trained at the Vaganova Academy of Russian Ballet. While at the Vaganova school, she scored the highest scores known to ...more

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    • Age: age 39
    • Birthplace: Saint Petersburg, Russia
    • Profession: Ballet Dancer, Actor
    • Credits: Brilianty (Diamonds), Ballerina, Great Dancers of Our Time
  2. 2

    Adabel Anahí Guerrero Melachenko, better known simply as Adabel Guerrero, is an Argentine professional theater and burlesque dancer, actress, and supervedette, who has also dabbled as a model and as a singer in several of her television, magazine and theater appearances. Guerrero has worked as a ...more

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    • Age: age 37
    • Birthplace: La Plata, Argentina
    • Profession: Ballet Dancer, Model, Choreographer, Actor, Dancer
  3. 3
    Evelyn Hart
    Photo: Freebase

    Evelyn Hart is a Canadian ballerina and former principal dancer with the Royal Winnipeg Ballet.more

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    • Age: age 59
    • Birthplace: Toronto, Canada
    • Profession: Ballet Dancer, Actor
    • Credits: Capote, Swan Lake: Tchaikovsky
  4. 4

    Dame Gillian Barbara Lynne, DBE is a British ballerina, dancer, choreographer, actress, and theatre/television director, noted for her popular theatre choreography associated with the musical Cats and the current longest running show in Broadway history, The Phantom of the Opera. At age 87, she was made ...more

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    • Age: age 89
    • Birthplace: Bromley, United Kingdom
    • Profession: Ballet Dancer, Television director, Theatre Director, Choreographer, Actor, + more
    • Credits: LS Lowry: A Simple Man
  5. 5
    Anna Pavlova
    Photo: Freebase/Public domain

    Anna Pavlovna Pavlova was a Russian prima ballerina of the late 19th and the early 20th centuries. She was a principal artist of the Imperial Russian Ballet and the Ballets Russes of Sergei Diaghilev. Pavlova is most recognized for the creation of the role The Dying Swan and, with her own company, ...more

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    • Age: Died at 50 (1881-1931)
    • Birthplace: Saint Petersburg, Russia
    • Profession: Ballet Dancer
    • Credits: The Golden Twenties
  6. 6
    Alicia Markova
    Photo: Freebase/Public domain

    Dame Alicia Markova DBE was an English ballerina and a choreographer, director and teacher of classical ballet. Most noted for her career with Sergei Diaghilev's Ballets Russes and touring internationally, she was widely considered to be one of the greatest classical ballet dancers of the 20th century.more

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    • Age: Died at 94 (1910-2004)
    • Birthplace: London, United Kingdom
    • Profession: Ballet Dancer, Choreographer, Actor
    • Credits: Ballets Russes, A Song for Miss Julie
  7. 7

    Dame Margot Fonteyn de Arias, DBE, was an English ballerina. She is widely regarded as one of the greatest classical ballet dancers of all time. She spent her entire career as a dancer with The Royal Ballet, eventually being appointed Prima Ballerina Assoluta of the company by Queen Elizabeth II.more

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    • Age: Died at 72 (1919-1991)
    • Birthplace: Reigate, United Kingdom
    • Profession: Ballet Dancer, Actor
    • Credits: Romeo and Juliet, I am a Dancer, Rudolf Nureyev: A Documentary, Royal Ballet: An Evening With, The Perfect Partnership: Fonteyn and Nureyev, + more
  8. 8

    Rebecca Wright was an American ballerina, teacher, choreographer and ballet school director.more

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    • Age: Died at 59 (1947-2006)
    • Birthplace: Springfield, Ohio, United States of America
    • Profession: Ballet Dancer, Choreographer, Teacher
    • Credits: The Merry Widow
  9. 9
    Vera Zorina
    Photo: Freebase/Fair use

    Vera Zorina was a German ballerina, theatre and film actress, and choreographer.more

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    • Age: Died at 86 (1917-2003)
    • Birthplace: Berlin, Germany
    • Profession: Ballet Dancer, Choreographer, Actor
    • Credits: The Goldwyn Follies, Follow the Boys, Louisiana Purchase, I Was an Adventuress
  10. 10
    Moira Shearer
    Photo: Freebase/Public domain

    Moira Shearer, Lady Kennedy, was an internationally renowned British ballet dancer and actress.more

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    • Age: Died at 80 (1926-2006)
    • Birthplace: Dunfermline, Scotland
    • Profession: Ballet Dancer, Actor
    • Credits: Peeping Tom, The Red Shoes, The Tales of Hoffmann, The Man Who Loved Redheads, The Story of Three Loves, + more
  11. 11
    Suzanne Farrell
    Photo: Freebase/Public domain

    Suzanne Farrell is an eminent 20th-century ballerina and the founder of the Suzanne Farrell Ballet at the Kennedy Center in Washington, D.C.more

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    • Age: age 70
    • Birthplace: Cincinnati, Ohio, United States of America
    • Profession: Ballet Dancer, Dance Teacher
    • Credits: Dancing for Mr. B: Six Balanchine Ballerinas, A Midsummer Night's Dream, Choreography by Balanchine: Tzigane, Andante from Divertimento No. 15, The Four Temperaments, + more
  12. 12

    Natalia Romanovna Makarova is a Soviet-Russian-born prima ballerina and choreographer. The History of Dance, published in 1981, notes that “her performances set standards of artistry and aristocracy of dance which mark her as the finest ballerina of her generation in the West.”more

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    • Age: age 75
    • Birthplace: Saint Petersburg, Russia
    • Profession: Ballet Dancer, Choreographer, Actor
    • Credits: Swan Lake: The Royal Ballet, Swan Lake: Tchaikovsky, Natasha: Natalia Makarova, The Glory of the Kirov, Minkus: La Bayadère: Teatro alla Scala, + more
  13. 13

    Carolyn George was an American ballerina, photographer, and dance instructor.more

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    • Age: Died at 82 (1927-2009)
    • Birthplace: Dallas, Texas, United States of America
    • Profession: Ballet Dancer, Dance Instructor, Photographer
  14. 14

    Phyllida Crowley Smith is an English ballerina, theatre actress and choreographer. Born on the Isle of Wight, England, she studied at the Bush Davies School of Theatre Arts. She won The Cosmopolitan Magazine Award for Best Younger Dancer at the age of 16. Theatre credits include Heathcliff, Andrew Lloyd ...more

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    • Age: age 47
    • Birthplace: Isle of Wight, England
    • Profession: Ballet Dancer, Choreographer, Actor, Singer
    • Credits: Beyond the Sea, Cats
  15. 15

    Zizi Jeanmaire was a singer, dancer, ballerina,and actress.more

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    • Age: age 91
    • Birthplace: Paris, France
    • Profession: Ballet Dancer, Actor, Singer, Dancer
    • Credits: Hans Christian Andersen, Anything Goes, Carmen, Black Tights, Carmen, + more
  16. 16
    Galina Ulanova
    Photo: Freebase/Public domain

    Galina Sergeyevna Ulánova was a Russian ballet dancer. She is frequently cited as being one of the greatest ballerinas of the 20th century.more

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    • Age: Died at 88 (1910-1998)
    • Birthplace: Northwestern Federal District, Eurasia, Russia, Saint Petersburg
    • Profession: Ballet Dancer, Actor
    • Credits: Romeo and Juliet, Stars of the Russian Ballet, The Bolshoi Ballet
  17. 17
    Barbara Ledermann
    Photo: Freebase/Public domain

    Barbara was the older of two daughters born to Jewish parents in Germany's capital, Berlin. Barbara's father was a successful lawyer. As soon as Barbara was old enough to walk, he would take her around Berlin to see the sights and tour the city's art museums. Barbara liked to go horseback riding and ...more

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    • Age: age 90
    • Birthplace: Berlin, Germany
    • Profession: Ballet Dancer
    • Credits: Daring to Resist: Three Women Face the Holocaust
  18. 18
    Sulamith Messerer
    Photo: Freebase/Public domain

    Sulamith Mikhailovna Messerer, OBE was a Russian ballerina and choreographer who laid the foundations for the classical ballet in Japan. Sulamith studied in the Moscow Ballet School under Vasily Tikhomirov and Elisabeth Gerdt and danced in the Bolshoi Theatre from 1926 until 1950. In 1933, she and her ...more

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    • Age: Died at 96 (1908-2004)
    • Birthplace: Moscow, Russia
    • Profession: Ballet Dancer, Choreographer
  19. 19

    Alexandra Zaharias is an American ballerina and ballet teacher.more

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    • Age: age 86
    • Birthplace: St. Louis, Missouri, United States of America
    • Profession: Ballet Dancer, Choreographer, Teacher
  20. 20

    Maude Lloyd was a South African ballerina and dance critic. Maude Lloyd was born in Cape Town, South Africa, and studied classical ballet there under Helen Webb. She came to London in 1926 to study, and helped form the Ballet Rambert. The lead roles in many ballets by Frederick Ashton, Antony Tudor and ...more

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    • Age: Died at 96 (1908-2004)
    • Birthplace: Cape Town, South Africa
    • Profession: Ballet Dancer, Critic
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