Talk:Ludwig Minkus

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Former featured article candidate Ludwig Minkus is a former featured article candidate. Please view the links under Article milestones below to see why the nomination failed. For older candidates, please check the archive.
April 11, 2006 Featured article candidate Not promoted


Trotsky was named Leon Davidovich Bronstein, and his father was David Leontyevish Bronstein so I presume this may indicate that the father of Léon Minkus may have been named Theodore, Feodor in Russian (or equivalent spelling) Minkus (ich/ish/itch names are patronymic)? Arniep 23:20, 8 February 2006 (UTC)

After I did some research on Minkus, I have come to the conclusion that the most likely scenario regarding his name is that he was born Aloisius Ludwig. Now many historians say that when he was first in Russia he changed his name to Leon Fedorvich - but this makes no scense, as in Russia he has always been (and still is) referred to as simply Ludwig Minkus (I have many libretti and contemporary press sources from the period (in various books), all of which call him Ludwig Minkus, with no middle name). Russians have a tendancy to address people by their first name and middle, for example - Nina Felixovna, so if his name was in fact Leon Fedorovich during that time, it is very likely he would have been referred to as such).

It is my belief that when Minkus left Russia in early 1892, he changed his name yet again at some pint after his arrival in Vienna, this time to Leon Fedorovich. It has been said by some historians that in his last years he played piano and violin for the ballet in Vienna, as well as adjusting scores. There he was knwon as Leon Fedorovich. The reason I believe this is because just about all European accounts of the composer refer to him as such, but when Pavlova performed excerpts from his works she credited him as Ludwig. In London, as well as Austrailia, he is known as Ludwig. This is due to the stagings of his ballets by Nureyev and Makarova, both from St. Petersburg, where he is called Ludwig.

Why he ever changed his name at all I dont know. Mrlopez2681 07:47, 6 April 2006 (UTC)

Questions for copyedit[edit]

Before copy-editing I have a few questions.

  • In the first paragraph of the Life section, you state that his birth and death dates and locations for such. How do you know that the information following his name at the beginning of the article are correct? If there is question, this should be footnoted and the sources for information cited.
  • The first sentence of the article states that he is "believed to be of either of Polish or Czech origin." though it states that he was born near Brno (the modern Czech spelling should be used). If we know where he was born, why would his nationality be questioned?
  • In the second paragraph under "Life" you state that he conducted an orchestra that competed against Johann Strauss II, was this in a competition or what? How did they compete against Strauss?
  • What sources say that Minkus was an orphan? These will need to be noted in footnotes.

One note, I've read over the Life section again and I will likely do a good deal to condense the first two paragraphs. The basic statement of the first paragraph is that little information exists on his life and that what can be found is often contradicting. This should really be said in a single sentence such as "The details of Minkus' life are sketchy at best and those sources that do provide information often contradict one another." Then from there lead into to information on his birth and early life. The information on how his music is still performed belongs under the Music section.

I will go ahead and work on the sources list. *Exeunt* Ganymead | Dialogue? 15:04, 11 April 2006 (UTC)

  • This is the most authoritive figure.
  • The birthplace being given as Brno was there before I had ever started working on this article. I went ahead and left it. I have seen his birthplace given as Vienna, and simply as Austria, as well as Czechoslavakia.
  • I read this in the liner notes for the Bonynge conducted CD, "La Source", given in the reference section...I know that conductors often competed for money to study abroad, etc. in 19th century Europe.
  • This should probably be taken out, as I have read this I know, but where I dont remember.

Regarding condensing the Life section as you suggected, that sounds very good! As well as the other siggections. I've just purchased a book through by Ivor Guest "Letters from a Balletmaster - the correspondance of Arthur Saint-Leon". This choreographer/Balletmaster was a close freind of Minkus. There is a wealth of information in this book, and I can possibly add alot more info. Mrlopez2681 08:09, 14 April 2006 (UTC)

Ganymead asked "If we know where he was born, why would his nationality be questioned?". There was no such state as the Czech republic when Minkus was alive, the area was just part of the Austro-Hungarian empire. Arniep 11:26, 14 April 2006 (UTC)
I believe that Minkus was described as Czech by a contemporary historian.--tufkaa 21:46, 19 April 2006 (UTC)
That author may have had a bias so I think we should be careful of ascribing a nationality to him. Arniep 18:49, 21 April 2006 (UTC)
Yes, please understand that I was not advocating for ascribing nationality indescriminantly. However, when a contemporary historian ascribes such information to an individual, I think this is worth mentioning in an article, especially for an individual of whom little is known about his origins. Of course this could be done with a qualifying statement for added NPOV. Is there anything documented which discredits this particular historian's objectivity in ascribing nationality?--tufkaa 21:39, 21 April 2006 (UTC)


This article seems very long and full of information that could probably reside elsewhere. For instance, can the information about the individual ballets be removed, and simply listed on the articles about the individual ballets themselves? Same with all of the pictures?--tufkaa 21:46, 19 April 2006 (UTC)


Wait a minute! He was born "Aloisius Ludwig"? "Louis Louis"? Isn't that a bit unusual? I mean I have a cousin Nancy Ann, which comes out to "Anna Anna", but then, my family goes in for weird names. What's the citation for this name?

My edits[edit]

I am unable to move the article to Ludwig Minkus, as it already exsists as a redirect page.

Is there any way it can be moved to that page without having to copy and paste?

I have never once seen anywhere in all of my extensive research and in any of my Imperial-era materials Minkus being referred to as Ludvig. In Russian the name is Ludvig (when translated from cryllic), but in French, which was the official language of the Imperial Russian Court, the name is always 'Ludwig' - all Imperial-era programs were in french.

His first name was Ludwig. I have yet to update the article, but the name of 'Léon' is an early 20th century error passed on from source to source that came about thanks to Pavlova's company, who for some reason credited him as 'Léon Fyodorovich'.

The conductor Richard Bonynge was the first to resurrect Pavlova's sheet music and record Minkus's material for the 1960 album "The Art of the Prima Ballerina".

That same year Nureyev staged Petipa's The Kingdom of the Shades scene from La Bayadere. Since all that was available of Minkus's music in the west was of the old Pavlova orchestral parts and piano reductions, John Lachbery re-orchestrated the music. All of the sheet music said "Léon Feodorovich Minkus", and thus the name spread as Lanchbery began recording and publishing his version.

I thought for some time that he changed his name after leaving Russia, but his death certificate has his first name as Ludwig and his last name as Minkus.

--Mrlopez2681 21:46, 1 July 2007 (UTC)

Cut and paste move[edit]

There was a cut and paste move 18 November 2007. I've put the page histories together. If anyone decides to move this article again, please either use the "move" button or ask on WP:Requested moves. Thanks. Gimmetrow 03:12, 16 May 2008 (UTC)

Composer project review[edit]

I've reviewed this article as part of the Composers project review of its B-class articles. This article is B-class, but only barely. It lacks balance in the critical commentary, and claims absence of knowledge without appearing to investigate appropriate sources (specifically, no Russian-language sources have been consulted). It also needs copyediting and more structure. My detailed comments are on the comments page; questions or comments can be left here or on my talk page. Magic♪piano 16:13, 15 December 2008 (UTC)

Assessment comment[edit]

The comment(s) below were originally left at Talk:Ludwig Minkus/Comments, and are posted here for posterity. Following several discussions in past years, these subpages are now deprecated. The comments may be irrelevant or outdated; if so, please feel free to remove this section.

Last edited at 16:07, 15 December 2008 (UTC). Substituted at 22:35, 29 April 2016 (UTC)