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The present drawing was engraved in 1779 by the artist, with minor differences, under the title Jean Bercher, dit Dauberval, danse un tambourin avec Madamoiselle Guimard et Marie Allard (Paris, Mairie du XXe arrondissement, 4 siècles de Ballet à Paris, 1985, no. 143).
Dauberval (1742-1806) made his debut as a dancer at the Opera in 1761 and went on to become maître de ballet. He left the company in 1785 to direct the Opera at Bordeaux.
Mademoiselle Guimard (1743-1816) first appeared in the corps de ballet at the Comédie-Française in 1758 and entered the Académie-Royale four years later. Her best known performances were in Pygmalion and Médée et Jason. She was very thin and known for her spitefulness but was nonetheless very influential.
Marie Allard (1742-1802) was born in Marseille and was the mother of Auguste Vestris, the greatest dancer of his time. She made her debut in Marseille and danced at Lyon before appearing at the Paris Opera from 1761 to 1782.
This drawing was probably made around 1765-70 and was exhibited, in the present frame, in the lifetime of the artist.