Vaslav Nijinsky (1889 – 1950) was a Russian ballet dancer and choreographer of Polish descent. He is often acclaimed as the greatest male dancer of the early 20th century.
Not only could he dance en pointe, a rare skill among male dancers at the time, Nijinsky was celebrated for his virtuosity and for the depth and intensity of his characterizations. His seemingly gravity-defying leaps would cause sensations in the crowd.
Starting at the Russian Imperial Ballet, he later joined Dhiaghilev's Ballets Russes, where he began to experiment with his art form ultimately choreographing several of his own original ballets.