The original signatories – United States President Franklin D. Roosevelt, British Prime Minister Winston Churchill, the USSR’s Ambassador to the US Maxim Litvinov, and Chinese Minister of Foreign Affairs T. V. Soong – were joined the next day by a further 24 nations.

Composed in the Romantic style, the score received good reviews although responses to the ballet itself were mostly negative. The fortunes of the ballet only turned around with a new staging in New York in 1954.

Peter the Great’s decision to ban beards was unpopular, not only because it was a significant challenge to tradition but also because shaving a beard was interpreted by some Orthodox Christians as being sinful.