It is his job and his right, given, to do as he pleases, but...history-(and not only ballet's)-is full of case scenarios where "rightful" decision were-(are)-endlessly questioned when outcomes are just too much to witness or accept. Given, Skorik is dancing right now all she wants under her powerful tutelage, but given also that this is being exposed to the whole world as the decline of the company. It is not a win-win situation. Both Skorik and Fateev are destroying a legendary symbol. And yes...this is all "legal".
In Oksana SKorik's case, Fateyev has well and truly exercised his "right" to cast whoever he pleases in whatever roles he pleases, and seemingly with no thought to her suitability. There are very few principal roles that she does not now dance, and the major omission at the moment is Aurora. Even this role, she is to dance. She was originally on the playbill to dance Aurora long ago (I will try to research the date, but I think it was right at the start of the season, or maybe even last season) but she was replaced. Recently I sat in the loge next to the stage for her Raymonda and did my best to watch objectively. I still see an inexpressive dancer, although she did smile, but that was her only expression apart from here normal still face. I do see a dancer who has gained very much in confidence and also who is technically much improved, and undoubtedly this is because of the sheer amount of stage exposure she has had. However, I still do not see an artiste, and I am very much surprised by those who claim this for her. Yes, she has beautiful lines, but what good are they when they are not used to illuminate a role? Her roles are interchangeable - she does not characterise - and really I feel that watching her, I am watching a student perform exercises. It's difficult to explain it, and many have said they see no "soul" in her dancing. That's what I feel, too. I wish Yuri Fateyev had championed some other dancer. She is not a Mariinsky dancer, in that she does not reveal the soul and heart of her performance through every movement, and that for me is the great VaganovaMariinsky tradition, which she does not exemplify.