Helene

Sergei Filin Attacked

653 posts in this topic

Bingo, Amy. Unless she is an unusually pushy whiner, Vorontsova's career desires make no sense as a real motive. Something bigger was afoot.

Dmitrichenko may have been paid-off ("You'll go to jail but your family will be financially set for life..." or something to that effect) by a bigger force.

Share this post


Link to post

I think it's worth remembering that Filin promoted Vorontsova out of the corps de ballet in May 2012 and that he promoted Dmitrichenko twice, to first soloist in January 2012 and to leading soloist in December 2012.

Put like that, there isn't any real motive for the attack. Perhaps it's all a frame up.

Or, as it seemed to me when I read the different statements, like somebody was being greedy. Given of course that I'm only going by what I read.

Share this post


Link to post

Taranda's assertion that this whole thing hurt Tsiskaridze more than Filin has made me lose all respect for a man I consider one of the greatest dancers I've ever see on film.

Perhaps what Taranda meant was that Filin will no doubt recover and return to his job as Bolshoi director, don't forget that poor vision was never a handicap for Alicia Alonso. Tsiskaridze will forever be tainted by the accusatons against him,

I agree that that's what Taranda meant, but there is still doubt about Filin's recovery and forgive me, you can't really think that "poor vision" (as in, partial blindness) isn't a terrible thing to suffer from in life or that people who suffer a traumatic physical attack don't suffer from it in more numinous ways for the rest of their lives. And Taranda should know that as well. (There is much testimony on the last point.) It's also premature to say what will happen to Tsiskaridze's reputation because the full story of the crime itself is still not known....though I agree it may not recover. The wounds to his reputation for wisdom or tact at a moment of crisis (I'm thinking of his earliest remarks when the attack took place) are partly self inflicted.

I think it's worth remembering that Filin promoted Vorontsova out of the corps de ballet in May 2012 and that he promoted Dmitrichenko twice, to first soloist in January 2012 and to leading soloist in December 2012.

Put like that, there isn't any real motive for the attack. Perhaps it's all a frame up.

Or, as it seemed to me when I read the different statements, like somebody was being greedy. Given of course that I'm only going by what I read.

It may be she was just naive and the people around her crazy. Obviously, if Dmitrichenko did this--as it appears he did--then he is not given to the most rational analysis of events.

Share this post


Link to post

re. the 'Wife-vs-Girlfriend' designation, it looks like Vorontzova is the common-law wife (as opposed to 'real-law wife') of Dmitrichenko. The above article clarifies this. In the USA, this is called a 'long-term, live-in girlfriend.' In Russia, people in such long-term arrangements are called 'wife' and 'husband'....e.g., Balanchine and Danilova.

It depends where and when in the US, where there is and has been common-law marriage with the legal rights and restrictions of marriage. A "marriage-like" relationship for one year is considered the basis for a family sponsorship for Permanent Residency in Canada. The difference is in the way the press states it. Even in places with common-law marriage, in a non-City Hall registered marriage the person is more oftened described as someone's "partner" than wife, whereas in Russia, it serms, the press refers to a live-in partner as a "husband" or "wife."

Perhaps what Taranda meant was that Filin will no doubt recover and return to his job as Bolshoi director, don't forget that poor vision was never a handicap for Alicia Alonso.

There was hardly "no doubt" when he made his statement, and how big of him to decide the relative fall-out, especially when Tsiskaridze had already escewed the high road in his initial statements about how this was a love affair or business deal outside the theater and, as it turns out, it was in his own backyard, or at least part of it was. Even after his own conflicts with Filin and Bolshoi management made him a suspect -- not just his criticism but his methods -- and even after saying that he didn't think Dmitrienko was capable of the attack, he still threw him under the bus by talking about how Dmitrienko had conflicts with Filin "that everyone knew about" over grant money and how Filin distributed it. What a guy to be defending.

Filin has been damaged permanently physically, his vision has been stolen, and he and his family have been traumatized, and Taranda thinks that Tsiskaridze's mostly self-inflicted damage to his reputation is somehow worse? Unlike most people, Tsiskaridze had a very public pulpit from which to do damage control: first by expressing his sympathy for the attack and decrying it, second by not speculating in ways that made it sound like the attack was caused by tawdry deeds outside the theater, and by using media to say, "I'm, like everyone else who had conflicts with Filin, being interviewed by the police, and I'm certain I will be cleared soon," even if he added that he thinks Filin is a horrible manager.

Tsiskaridze will forever be tainted by the accusatons against him, indeed there are already those suggesting his close association with Vorontsova automatically means he was part of a plot to attack Filin. Mud sticks and and it could be his reputation is destroyed forever by all this and I think that is what Taranda was alluding to.

If he's known more for his conflicts than his dancing, then that is his own doing. At this point, it's impossible to separate the damage he's inflicted on himself before and after he was suspected in any way -- Filin himself said early on that he didn't suspect Tsiskaridze -- and how much being suspected hurt his reputation. Perhaps it was not a good strategy for Tsiskaridze himself to say it hurts him more than Filin.

Taranda's opinion it is worth listening to, after all few know the Bolshoi better than he does and Tsiskaridze has danced in his company so he knows his character well. He is also a neutral in all this as he is hardly Grigorovich's greatest fan after being publicly sacked by him. There is a lot of back story with all this that I'm afraid will ever emerge.

In my opinion, Taranda's opinion speaks more about Taranda than Tsiskaridze, and Filin, by stating that he's sure there is more behind this than the three in custody, is trying to ensure that the backstory comes out.

I am NOT condoning any kind of acid attack on anyone, but perhaps when Filin resumes the helm of the Bolshoi he ought to also re-evaluate his own management strategies. It's not easy dealing with 200 very ambitious egos I'm sure, but it also seems like his style of management escalated, rather than de-escalated conflict.

Conflict is a given in his line of work: there are more dancers, designers, conductors, and coaches than opportunities. What happened to him was criminal, and to change in light of a criminal attack -- an exception -- is a questionable strategy.

I think it's worth remembering that Filin promoted Vorontsova out of the corps de ballet in May 2012 and that he promoted Dmitrichenko twice, to first soloist in January 2012 and to leading soloist in December 2012.

Put like that, there isn't any real motive for the attack. Perhaps it's all a frame up.

Except for second part of the story, which is that Dmitricheno didn't think it was enough, just like Vorontsova didn't think it was enough, so the motive is still there, even if it is a frame-up or Dmitichenko was involved but is taking the fall for others as well. Dmitrichenko was also quoted as complaining about salaries at the company, which is presumably why he was managing a dacha village outside Moscow, and wilth bigger promotions come bigger pay and sometimes (bigger) guesting opportunities. None of the articles said that Filin had rejected Dmitrichenko's grant proposals, only that they has fought about grants, but if that were so, it would be another financial motive.

As far as Vorontsova or her entourage thinking she is being held behind, she's probably not only looking at the Somovas and Smirnovas and their careers, but also the trajectory of Osipova's. (It was Burlaka, not Filin, who insisted that Osipova break her ABT guest contract to join the company in DC for "Le Corsaire.") Osipova was offered money and apartments and great flexibilty in her contract by Kekhman, and she is back to guesting at the Bolshoi. What uber-talented 21-year-old who was sponsored at 16 to go to one of the most pretigious schools in the country by a former star and company director, was asked to join the Bolshoi, is the girlfriend of a rising dancer from a dance family, is coached by one of the most famous and self-promoting dancers around, and has been told and shown how wonderful she is and how she is being robbed of her due opportunities by coach and boyfriend wouldn't want to go as fast as possible up the food chain and think she deserves it? Most of the ones who haven't have loyalty to the institutions or get their dancing identities from them or put their careers into the hands of a creative genius like Balanchine despite other offers and possibilities.

Share this post


Link to post
he was managing a dacha village outside Moscow

Dmitrichenko is involved in real estate business circles? I smell the trail of the syndicate. They've seemed to be involved from the beginning (attack seems so professional hit-man)... but exactly how they were involved seemed rather vague... this is still vague, but another thread.

Share this post


Link to post

. By the way, isn't it telling that Filin never used his power to unjustifiably promote his own wife?

Good point, Natalia.

It is a wrong point because it disagrees with facts.

There is no need here to listen to behind-the-scenes rumours and speculations. It will be enough to look at the page of Artistic Director’s wife on the Bolshoi’s website: http://www.bolshoi.r...ons/ballet/273/

After joining the Bolshoi in 1996 she remained for 14+ years a reliable and hard-working corps de ballet member: swans, Willis, shades, etc., sometimes dancing in groups of 6 or 8.

Her career took off in that very year of 2011 when she was given parts in ‘The Rubies’ and ‘Symphony of Psalms’, Fairy of Generosity and White Cat in ‘The Sleeping Beauty’ and the French Doll in ‘The Nutcracker’. The year 2012 brought more new advanced roles: one of 4 swans in ‘Swan Lake’, Mona in ‘Giselle’, pas de six in ‘La Sylphide’, pas de trois in ‘The Emeralds’, 1st variation in pas d'aks′on in ‘La fille du pharaoh’, a nymph in ‘Apollo’ and others.

I have written it without delving into guesses and arguments but only in order to state the sober facts as they are.

Share this post


Link to post

As far as Vorontsova or her entourage thinking she is being held behind, she's probably not only looking at the Somovas and Smirnovas and their careers, but also the trajectory of Osipova's.

Anyone remember Osipova's debut in the Bolshoi's Giselle?

Share this post


Link to post
he was managing a dacha village outside Moscow

Dmitrichenko is involved in real estate business circles? I smell the trail of the syndicate. They've seemed to be involved from the beginning (attack seems so professional hit-man)... but exactly how they were involved seemed rather vague... this is still vague, but another thread.

This attack seems so thug-who-thinks-he-is-a-professional-hitman. A professional hit man wouldn't have left an audit trail, unless it was part of a set up to make him seem like a bumbling fool.

Share this post


Link to post

As far as Vorontsova or her entourage thinking she is being held behind, she's probably not only looking at the Somovas and Smirnovas and their careers, but also the trajectory of Osipova's.

Anyone remember Osipova's debut in the Bolshoi's Giselle?

Not sure how you are linking this to the topic, or what your perspective on that debut was--but yes...Excerpts were almost immediately put up on youtube. The performance and the excerpts were well-received by many though I know there were skeptics...and she was pretty soon after making guest appearances in the role. (I also remember interviews she gave when she was preparing the debut in which she spoke about the work she was doing with her coach etc.)

Share this post


Link to post

It will be enough to look at the page of Artistic Director’s wife on the Bolshoi’s website: http://www.bolshoi.r...ons/ballet/273/

After joining the Bolshoi in 1996 she remained for 14+ years a reliable and hard-working corps de ballet member: swans, Willis, shades, etc., sometimes dancing in groups of 6 or 8.

Her career took off in that very year of 2011 when she was given parts in ‘The Rubies’ and ‘Symphony of Psalms’, Fairy of Generosity and White Cat in ‘The Sleeping Beauty’ and the French Doll in ‘The Nutcracker’. The year 2012 brought more new advanced roles: one of 4 swans in ‘Swan Lake’, Mona in ‘Giselle’, pas de six in ‘La Sylphide’, pas de trois in ‘The Emeralds’, 1st variation in pas d'aks′on in ‘La fille du pharaoh’, a nymph in ‘Apollo’ and others.

I have written it without delving into guesses and arguments but only in order to state the sober facts as they are.

Wouldn't it be fair to say that her roles began to improve markedly in 2009 under Yuri Burlaka? That's when she was cast in the Travail quartet in Coppelia and as one of Esmeralda's four friends. The following year came Lise's friends and the D'Jampe dance. Prior to that she had been on maternity leave twice, which obviously would have limited her stage time. I assume that her casting in the "Rubies" corps, the "Emeralds" trio and as one of Apollo's nymphs would have been approved by repetiteurs of the Balanchine Trust, and that Kylian's repetiteurs likewise would have chosen the dancers for Symphony of Psalms, which was cast largely from the ranks of the corps de ballet. http://www.bolshoi.r...#20110721190000

Share this post


Link to post
he was managing a dacha village outside Moscow

Dmitrichenko is involved in real estate business circles? I smell the trail of the syndicate. They've seemed to be involved from the beginning (attack seems so professional hit-man)... but exactly how they were involved seemed rather vague... this is still vague, but another thread.

This attack seems so thug-who-thinks-he-is-a-professional-hitman. A professional hit man wouldn't have left an audit trail, unless it was part of a set up to make him seem like a bumbling fool.

Maybe it was intended scare as many people as possible... no trail would be less publicity? Someone with syndicate aspirations as opposed to real connections? I imagine there are all levels of proficiency when it comes to hit men. They don't seem to have found the hacker though.

Edited to add quote from Ismene Brown's blog : "a non-profit dacha partnership of which Dmitrichenko is chairman, according to the SPARK database.". That doesn't sound like organized crime.

Share this post


Link to post

Ismene Brown reports in an opinion piece in theartsdesk.com that

Dmitrichenko does not believe he has anything to be sorry for, because he paid 50000 rubles for Filin to be beaten up and didn't know about the acid plans, which he would have expected to cost more.

Dmitrichenko is a computer whiz and has been hacking into Bolshoi management's email accounts to expose what he claims is an extortion scheme by at least Filin in which dancers must pay fees to get roles and permission to dance overseas. (This is discussed in an article in "Izvetsia", which appears in translation on Brown's blog: http://www.ismeneb.com/ismeneb.com/Blog/Entries/2013/3/7_Bolshoi_soloist_paid_50%2C000_rubles_for_the_Filin_attack.html)

Dmitrichenko was involved in the attacks on Filin last fall: cyberattacks, phone messages, and slashed tires. She doesn't mention the cyberattacks on Yanin.

Share this post


Link to post

About Zarutsky. . .

"The burly, grim-faced Zarutsky, who served seven years in a maximum security prison for beating up someone who later died, tried to cover his face from TV cameras with his tattooed hand when he was led into the courtroom. He made an indecent gesture and uttered an obscene comment to reporters who shouted out questions about his part in the crime."

http://www.washingto...676f_story.html

Share this post


Link to post
"The burly, grim-faced Zarutsky, who served seven years in a maximum security prison for beating up someone who later died, tried to cover his face from TV cameras with his tattooed hand when he was led into the courtroom. He made an indecent gesture and uttered an obscene comment to reporters who shouted out questions about his part in the crime."

Something tells me we aren't in The Land of Sweets anymore.

Share this post


Link to post

Ismene Brown reports in an opinion piece in theartsdesk.com that

Dmitrichenko is a computer whiz and has been hacking into Bolshoi management's email accounts to expose what he claims is an extortion scheme by at least Filin in which dancers must pay fees to get roles and permission to dance overseas.

um, sounds like what an agent/agency does all the time, taking a percentage of an artist's fees in exchange for finding them work. also it is the director's job to give or withhold permission for guest performing, n'est-ce pas?

Share this post


Link to post

I know that the Russian and Chinese figure skating Federations take a percentage of the prize money the athletes win -- the official percentage is 10%, but it's paid directly to the Federation, not the athlete(s), and the official reason is because they've provided subsidized training (even when the Russian Fed was in disarray after the break-up of the Soviet Union and provided little for at least a decade). This was a given and wasn't hidden, although the percentage might have been.

However, I don't think that it is customary for theater management to have agent-like arrangements, because then there would be no reason for Dmitrichenko to make accusations and hack into management's email to find evidence. It would be a known practice.

It is standard practice for management to have to approve guest gigs, whether explictly arranged in the dancer's contract or during the time the dancer is specifically contracted to the company. It's also a fine line between using the Bolshoi name and having the Bolshoi affiliation be known. For example, if the posters and PR materials call them "Artists of the Bolshoi" as part of the name of the group, then the theater has every right to control whether this is permitted. If they are "Dancer X and Friends," there certainly can be no stopping the facts, such as a dancer is a Bolshoi [Rank], from being publicized in the dancer bios in the program and in newspaper previews and reviews.

Share this post


Link to post

Ismene Brown reports in an opinion piece in theartsdesk.com that

Dmitrichenko does not believe he has anything to be sorry for, because he paid 50000 rubles for Filin to be beaten up and didn't know about the acid plans, which he would have expected to cost more.

Dmitrichenko is a computer whiz and has been hacking into Bolshoi management's email accounts to expose what he claims is an extortion scheme by at least Filin in which dancers must pay fees to get roles and permission to dance overseas. (This is discussed in an article in "Izvetsia", which appears in translation on Brown's blog: http://www.ismeneb.c...lin_attack.html)

Dmitrichenko was involved in the attacks on Filin last fall: cyberattacks, phone messages, and slashed tires. She doesn't mention the cyberattacks on Yanin.

He doesn't believe he has anything to be sorry for because he allegedly only asked for a beating? Can't believe I read that correctly.

Acid in the face is a very personal type of crime; acid in the eyes of an Artistic Director only makes the context even more particular. From the start it seemed like the goal of the attack was to get Filin out and unable to do his work. This Zarutsky guy apparently beat someone so badly that person died later on - so this whole "I just paid for a ['harmless'] beating" type of thing seems like a lame excuse to me.

Of course, stranger things have happened and he might be telling the truth; it just doesn't add up for me so far. He should be very sorry for setting these wheels in motion if in fact he did not know, not be trying to justify it.

Share this post


Link to post

In the US a wife cannot be forced to testify against her husband. Does that rule exist under Russian law? If so, Dmitrichenko should think about marrying his girl friend ASAP. She will be a star witness.

If Filin was in fact so interested in taking bribes from his own Bolshoi dancers in exchange for parts, why did he offer a contract to an outsider, David Hallberg, and then feature Hallberg in the HD broadcast of SB? Under Dmitrichenko's theory, Filin would have saved all lead parts for Bolshoi dancers and sold them to the highest bribe offer.

Share this post


Link to post

He doesn't believe he has anything to be sorry for because he allegedly only asked for a beating? Can't believe I read that correctly.

Acid in the face is a very personal type of crime; acid in the eyes of an Artistic Director only makes the context even more particular. From the start it seemed like the goal of the attack was to get Filin out and unable to do his work. This Zarutsky guy apparently beat someone so badly that person died later on - so this whole "I just paid for a ['harmless'] beating" type of thing seems like a lame excuse to me.

Of course, stranger things have happened and he might be telling the truth; it just doesn't add up for me so far. He should be very sorry for setting these wheels in motion if in fact he did not know, not be trying to justify it.

The problem with trying to parse this out is one ends up inside his logic. Let's play along and not assume he is lying. Hiring someone to beat someone up? I think even dancers at the Bolshoi might agree that's probably technically a crime and considered morally wrong!!! And yes, Elena, one ought to be very sorry indeed for even those hideous consequences of one's actions that one didn't have in mind--maybe it might even give one pause about something as trivial as having someone beaten up. Add to that the fact that hiring someone who managed to kill the last person he "merely" beat up suggests one was never very worried about consequences anyway...Oh well, perhaps Dmitrichenko didn't know the guy's background? Because that, of course, would make it all so much more understandable.

Never mind. Clearly, we should give him a break because he doesn't intend to sound like a psychopath...

Share this post


Link to post

The really freaky detail in the Izvestia report about yesterday's court proceeding is that the name of the country grocer who introduced Yuri Zarutsky to Pavel Dmitrichenko is, I kid you not, Sergei Killer.

Sixth paragraph:

http://izvestia.ru/news/546345

Share this post


Link to post

He doesn't believe he has anything to be sorry for because he allegedly only asked for a beating? Can't believe I read that correctly.

Acid in the face is a very personal type of crime; acid in the eyes of an Artistic Director only makes the context even more particular. From the start it seemed like the goal of the attack was to get Filin out and unable to do his work. This Zarutsky guy apparently beat someone so badly that person died later on - so this whole "I just paid for a ['harmless'] beating" type of thing seems like a lame excuse to me.

Of course, stranger things have happened and he might be telling the truth; it just doesn't add up for me so far. He should be very sorry for setting these wheels in motion if in fact he did not know, not be trying to justify it.

The problem with trying to parse this out is one ends up inside his logic. Let's play along and not assume he is lying. Hiring someone to beat someone up? I think even dancers at the Bolshoi might agree that's probably technically a crime and considered morally wrong!!! And yes, Elena, one ought to be very sorry indeed for even those hideous consequences of one's actions that one didn't have in mind--maybe it might even give one pause about something as trivial as having someone beaten up. Add to that the fact that hiring someone who managed to kill the last person he "merely" beat up suggests one was never very worried about consequences anyway...Oh well, perhaps Dmitrichenko didn't know the guy's background? Because that, of course, would make it all so much more understandable.

Never mind. Clearly, we should give him a break because he doesn't intend to sound like a psychopath...

I was struck by these sentences in the Guardian article of yesterday:

Dmitrichenko, speaking from a cage in the courtroom, was defiant. When the judge asked him if he wanted to apologise to Filin, Dmitrichenko replied: "For what?"
(emphasis is mine)

http://www.guardian.co.uk/world/2013/mar/07/bolshoi-accused-denies-ordering-acid

Share this post


Link to post

pretty typical for the accused to minimize their roles in crimes in an attempt o minimize jail time. We'll see if the judge buys it (doubtful).

The man claims he's Julian Assange, hacking into servers and giving Russian papers his findings. But they don't publish the breathless scandal that he expected. So he moved on to hiring convicts???

Share this post


Link to post
This attack seems so thug-who-thinks-he-is-a-professional-hitman. A professional hit man wouldn't have left an audit trail, unless it was part of a set up to make him seem like a bumbling fool.

Yes, it gets more "Jeff Gillooly / Tanya Harding" all the time. Sadly, Filin's eyesight may not recover as quickly as Nancy Kerrigan's knee.

Share this post


Link to post

He doesn't believe he has anything to be sorry for because he allegedly only asked for a beating? Can't believe I read that correctly.

Acid in the face is a very personal type of crime; acid in the eyes of an Artistic Director only makes the context even more particular. From the start it seemed like the goal of the attack was to get Filin out and unable to do his work. This Zarutsky guy apparently beat someone so badly that person died later on - so this whole "I just paid for a ['harmless'] beating" type of thing seems like a lame excuse to me.

Of course, stranger things have happened and he might be telling the truth; it just doesn't add up for me so far. He should be very sorry for setting these wheels in motion if in fact he did not know, not be trying to justify it.

The problem with trying to parse this out is one ends up inside his logic. Let's play along and not assume he is lying. Hiring someone to beat someone up? I think even dancers at the Bolshoi might agree that's probably technically a crime and considered morally wrong!!! And yes, Elena, one ought to be very sorry indeed for even those hideous consequences of one's actions that one didn't have in mind--maybe it might even give one pause about something as trivial as having someone beaten up. Add to that the fact that hiring someone who managed to kill the last person he "merely" beat up suggests one was never very worried about consequences anyway...Oh well, perhaps Dmitrichenko didn't know the guy's background? Because that, of course, would make it all so much more understandable.

Never mind. Clearly, we should give him a break because he doesn't intend to sound like a psychopath...

Thank you Drew, for putting it much more eloquently than I could. I was just truly shocked at reading these statements! We are in March and Filin is still battling to save his eyesight, it really is a heinous crime in every sense and I can't understand why he is making these comments that show so little remorse.

Share this post


Link to post