Marius Petipa (märyüs´ pĕtēpä´), 1822–1910, French dancer and choreographer, b. Marseilles. Petipa rose to prominence at the Imperial Theatre in St. Petersburg. He was the principal creator of the modern classical ballet. Bringing French and Italian traditions to Russia, he gave increasing importance to pure dance over pantomime and greatly expanded the roles of male dancers. His major works include Don Quixote (1869), La Bayadère (1875), The Sleeping Beauty (1890), The Nutcracker (1892), Swan Lake, Acts One and Three (1893), and Raymonda (1898).
See his memoirs (tr. 1958).