An archival collection of photographs and films of Leonid Yakobson (1904—1975) and his choreographic work in Moscow and St. Petersburg for the Bolshoi and Kirov ballets.

Everyone has heard of George Balanchine. Few outside Russia know of Leonid Yakobson, Balanchine’s contemporary, who remained in Lenin’s Russia and survived censorship during the darkest days of Stalin. Like Shostakovich, Yakobson suffered for his art and yet managed to create a singular body of revolutionary dances that spoke to the Soviet condition. His work was often considered so culturally explosive that it was described as “like a bomb going off.”

This archive was created by Ljubisa Matic in conjunction with the book "Like a Bomb Going Off: Leonid Yakobson and Ballet as Resistance in Soviet Russia" by Janice Ross, Yale University Press, 2015.