The Greatest Ballet Dancers of all Time

There are thousands of professional ballet dancers all over the globe and thousands more who are aspiring to be great someday. Throughout the years, the world has seen many of the greatest ballerinas but only a few took the hearts of millions all over the globe.

Meet the greatest ballet dancers of all time.

Anna Pavlova

When you are talking about the best of the best, you can’t leave the name Anna Pavlova out. Pavlova is still considered as the best ballerina to ever live. Born and raised in Russia, Pavlova was the biggest name in ballet in the late 19th and early 20th centuries.

When she made her debut in 1899 after studying at the Imperial Ballet School, people instantly knew she was going to be one of the best. Not only one of the best, but the best and not only in Russia but throughout the globe.


She quickly made prima ballerina with her flawless skills.

She is famous for her role as The Dying Swan choreographed by dancing legend Mikhail Fokine. Pavlova performed the solo dance piece nearly 4,000 times and has amazed every individual to see it.

They said that seeing her dance live was the greatest gift any aspiring ballet dancer can get in his or her lifetime. During her career, Pavlova was the principal artist of the Ballet Russes and Imperial Russian Ballet.

Margot Fonteyn

English ballerina Margot Fonteyn was recognized as truly one of the greatest including Queen Elizabeth II. She was appointed as prima ballerina assoluta of the Royal Ballet by the Queen.

Despite training in England and China, Fonteyn was passionate about Russian ballet influenced by her teacher Russian ballet master George Goncharov. Fonteyn’s greatest performances were in the works like Les Sylphides, Swan Lake, Raymonda, and more.

She was the other half of the great Ballet dup Fonteyn and Nureyev (Rudolf Nureyev). In 1935, she succeeded renowned ballerina Alicia Markova at the Vic-Wells Ballet School.

Sylvie Guillem

From 1984 to 1989, Sylvie Guillem was the top ballet dancer at the Paris Opera Ballet. Guillem was considered as the Margot Fonteyn of her lifetime. She was influenced by the best including Fonteyn and Pavlova.

She became a principal guest with the Royal Ballet in London. She is famous for her brilliant performance in the two acts of ballet piece Giselle. She also worked with Rudolf Nureyev with his version of Swan Lake and Don Quixote.

These three are truly legends in ballet and all of them used the Cecchetti training method to perfect their craft.