Musicians in the Orchestra (1872). Edgar Degas (French, Impressionism, 1834-1917). Oil on canvas. Stadelsches Kunstinstitut, Franfurt, Germany.
In Degas’ second variation of his orchestra scene, we see only the backs of their heads; the instruments are blocked from view. Degas radically reworked this painting several times, making space for the stage and his new chief protagonists – the dancers. The spotlight shimmers in their white and pink costumes. The dancers will have a formative impact on Degas’s work and lead him to fame.