Bolshoi Ballet

Sochi's glittery closing ceremony last night celebrated Russian culture, and no such celebration would be complete without ballet, of course. But leave it to the Olympics to bring Russia's two great—and very competitive—ballet houses together.

Georgian dancer Nina Ananiashvili was a star of the Bolshoi and, later, American Ballet Theatre. She may be blessed with endless arms and legs, but it's her warm generosity that makes her so endearing; you always want to root for her. Today, Ananiashvili is artistic director of the State Ballet of Georgia. She's about to celebrate her 51st birthday—and she's still dancing.

Here's a video of Ananiashvili performing Giselle's Act I solo with the Bolshoi. Happy #ThrowbackThursday!

In a controversial move, former Bolshoi Ballet star Nikolai Tsiskaridze has been appointed rector of the renowned Vaganova Academy, associate school of the Mariinsky Ballet.

Got any plans early tomorrow morning? The Telegraph will be streaming a Bolshoi Ballet company class live from London.

Getting a peek inside a major company’s technique class is always a treat. While seeing dancers perform onstage is magical, there’s something captivating about watching a ballerina’s unmade-up face fully concentrated on learning a combination or pushing for another pirouette.

 

Scandal and rivalry are nothing new for the Bolshoi Theatre. Crushed glass being placed in pointe shoes, needles being left in costumes, and even a dead cat being thrown onstage instead of flowers are just a few of the whispered rumors that have plagued the theatre for centuries.


But with the January acid attack on Bolshoi Ballet artistic director Sergei Filin, these backstage dramas were brought to the world stage. And the Russian government is not happy.

American Ballet Theatre principal David Hallberg is back in Moscow again. Although he has danced as a principal with the Bolshoi Ballet since 2011, this is the first time he's been in Russia since the devastating acid attack on the company's artistic director Sergei Filin in January.

 

After weeks of questions, it looks like there are finally some answers as to who was behind the acid attack on Bolshoi Ballet artistic director Sergei Filin. Last night, Russian police obtained confessions from three men, including Bolshoi dancer Pavel Dmitrichenko. It turns out that Dmitrichenko hired the other two to accost Filin as the director was getting into his car on January 17. On Russian state television yesterday, Dmitrichenko said he did not intend for the attack to go as far as it did.

An interesting twist has come out of the horrific attack on Bolshoi Ballet artistic director Sergei Filin—for the first time in history, a woman is in charge of the iconic Russian ballet company. Former principal Galina Stepanenko will serve as acting director while Filin recovers. How long that recovery will take is unclear right now as Filin continues to undergo surgery on his eyes and face.

Ballet politics turned ugly yesterday: Bolshoi Ballet artistic director Sergei Filin was attacked outside his home last night. A masked man threw a bottle of acid at his face. It's been reported that Filin's eyesight might be compromised and he will need extensive plastic surgery for his face. After a 15-hour operation in Moscow, Filin was flown to Brussels, Belgium this morning for special burns treatment. Doctors say his recovery may take up to six months.