Shipulina's heroism in stepping in to dance at the Sunday matinee is to be applauded but it does not take away from the fact that she is a mediocre dancer, compared to most Bolshoi or Mariinsky classical soloists. Only the announcement of the dreaded Alina Somova -- another Gaynor Minden spokesmodel -- as a 'guest Medora' would have been worse. I and the majority of posters here stand by our writings, based on decades of traveling the globe and comparing dancers. Nonetheless, you have a right to defend your spokesmodel - fair enough.
Furthermore, had the Bolshoi planned ahead and brought Zakharova or another Medora -- even if it were someone who could be taught the role for this tour -- we would not have been in this predicament of 'Schipulina Overload.' That is obvious, in reading how much Schipulina had to step in to cover for indisposed dancers throughout the tour.
p.s. The Bolshoi is the largest company on earth in the number of dancers -- 200 plus. How can a company of 200-plus dancers find itself on a major tour, at the Kennedy Center, with only one woman capable of dancing the role of Medora? The Bolshoi managers are trying their best but a class of Strategic Planning 101 may be necessary....also, Negotiations 101, when talking with the presenters (such as Kennedy Center) who will try their best to keep the number of principals to a minimum. The Bolshoi should have insisted in having another Medora flown in, especially when Anna Nikulina was removed from the roster at least amonth ago.