Obituary: Kyra Nijinsky

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The Independent Culture
I WAS deeply moved by your obituary of my mother Kyra Nijinsky [by Nadine Meisner, 22 October], writes Vaslav Markevitch. May I put right just a few details?

My mother was born in Vienna on 18 June 1914 - I saw her birth certificate and recall saying to myself "same date as de Gaulle's speech of 18 June 1940"; as for 1914, it was one year after Vaslav's and Romola's wedding in Buenos Aires in 1913.

As for Tamara, allegedly born in 1920 (probably at the end of 1920 or early 1921) - after receiving confidential evidence from my grandmother Romola herself, I for one don't consider her as Nijinsky's second daughter, since the alleged father had been interned for over a year and could not logically have begotten her. Bronislava in her memoirs was clear on this point: "the baby [Tamara] was six months old in July 1921", when Nijinsky's mother, Eleanor Bereda, fleeing the Russian Revolution, eventually arrived in Vienna.

All these points are mentioned in my own (as yet unpublished) manuscript on my grandparents, written in French. For the moment I have no French publisher, and none either in English, although I contemplated for a moment translating it first into English and publishing it in London.

Lastly, Nijinsky-Markevitch, or the other way round, are double-barrelled names I have been given by the press without my asking for them. My usual name is Vaslav Markevitch; I use as a pen name Marco Vinci.

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