George Balanchine graduated from the Russian imperial ballet school in 1921. He not only had a background in dance but he had musical experience as well. He then went on to be a choreographer for Sergio Diaghilev and the ballet russe. He eventually replaced nijinska as the ballet master. Once Diaghilev died, Balanchine started his own company and was sought out by Lincoln Kirstein who wanted him to come to America. Together they founded the School of American Ballet in 1934. From its creation until his death Balanchine served as an artistic director for the New York City Ballet.