Helene

Sergei Filin Attacked

653 posts in this topic

I previously regarded NT as merely an arrogant diva who likes to stir up trouble. However, with these latest comments in which he questions whether SF was actually attacked with acid, I have lost all sympathy for him, and regard him as completely lacking in credibility or humanity.

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Last time I checked, one doesn't have to be a member of Mensa to graduate from the Moscow (Bolshoi) Ballet Academy. I chalk-up NT's comments to stupidity and lack of tact but I don't think that he is cruel enough to mastermind this attack. Every time that he opens his mouth he digs a deeper hole. He should just dance and shut the **** up.

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With all of his bombast, Tsiskaridze is often quite careful in the way he words things. He didn't say, as far as I know, that Filin wasn't attacked with acid: he says that Filin wasn't attacked with sulfuric acid. He's careful on the technicalities of his position towards management, which his actions on the petition would seem to belie, until you check the fine print.

He could give Bill Clinton lessons on what "is" is.

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I don't think NT will ever recover from this. Swan song has been produced.

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This dreadful acid attack has shocked Londoners to the core and gives a clear idea of what injuries to expect.

http://www.standard.co.uk/news/london/cash-plea-by-friends-of-victorias-secret-worker-scarred-for-life-in-acid-attack-8479744.html?origin=internalSearch

This poor girls plight has attracted the attention of a hollywood plastic surgeon who has offered his services for free, but note her family is now homeless out of fear of the anonymous attacker.

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A similar case, though longer ago, is that of Katie Piper, who now heads a foundation for burn victims:

http://www.katiepipe...ndation.org.uk/

Ms Oni said she had been inspired by the story of Katie Piper, the model who launched a charity and spoke out publicly after falling victim to an acid attack orchestrated by her boyfriend, but that she would never feel safe with her attacker still at large.

“Even with the support of my family and friends and boyfriend I feel very alone. Nothing is going to be same anymore,” said Ms Oni.

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I've just had the chance to go through all the links which BA'rs have kindly posted here.

It seems that Mr. Tsiskaridze has concluded that the attack on Mr. Filin is really a sub-plot of the much more important conspiracy against ... himself.

I know that Tsiskaridze is a great dancer, but he certainly seems to be the employee-colleague from hell. He is protected by tenure for life -- seems obsessed by his own grievances -- believes that he can intervene in everything about which he disapproves -- is convinced that he is the only one who can straighten out what he describes as a dysfunctional and immoral institution -- and cannot avoid making extreme statements about just about everything.

He continues to dig his own grave, it seems to me. How odd that a performer who excels in an art that is essentially mute should have so little ability to keep his mouth shut.

I agree with you Bart. It would be best for him if he remains silent. He shouldn't have added anything further than his initial statement(s), and certainly nothing further after being questioned by the authorities. He seems to be "... wallowing in self-love," as Sir Derek Jacoby aptly described Sir Ian McKellan's portrayal of "Richard II." Like I stated earlier in this thread, Tsiskaridze just can't help himself...

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The New York Times states: According to the director, "there was 'no doubt' that he was involved in the 2011 publication of erotic photographs that prompted Gennady Yanin, who was at the time the Bolshoi director, to leave the company.....'I have only one feeling: Everything that happened is the natural result of the lawlessness that was created in the first place by Nikolai Maksimovich Tsiskaridze,” he said. “Pouring mud on the theater and its workers, constant intrigues and certainty of his own impunity — that was the background which made this tragedy possible.'"

If blamed for two vicious attacks (particularly if one assumes that the conclusory allegations are inaccurate), who could not respond? Even without these direct accusations, the director asserts that speaking truth about being admittedly sidelined, pushed out, or purged caused an acid attack. In essence, the director argues that NT bears blame, regardless of participation in the wrongdoing against Filin, because he expressed that did not like the reconstruction, would not speak falsely against other artists, and voiced his desire for other roles. Who could remain polite and not be provoked in that case? I imagine the response was intended, expected, and useful, based on the provocation.

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It was a lot more than criticizing the theater. Going to the top artists in the nation to ask them to sign a petition based on outright lies about the state of the current administration is the type of action that would get most people fired on the spot. Once there was public evidence showing his less-than-transparent efforts to undermine the administration through sordid means -- he's not just an op-ed writer doing his job to expose the grievous wrongs of his targets -- why should Iksanov not describe how it impacts his theater, especially when it's not uncommon for incivility to lead to more incivility, posturing about using force, and then physical force?

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It was a lot more than criticizing the theater. Going to the top artists in the nation to ask them to sign a petition based on outright lies about the state of the current administration is the type of action that would get most people fired on the spot. Once there was public evidence showing his less-than-transparent efforts to undermine the administration through sordid means -- he's not just an op-ed writer doing his job to expose the grievous wrongs of his targets -- why should Iksanov not describe how it impacts his theater, especially when it's not uncommon for incivility to lead to more incivility, posturing about using force, and then physical force?

I do not condone the acts upon Gennady Yanin, which Iksanov attributes to NT (but without showing his alleged proof), nor the filing of false petitions and letters (attributed by others to NT.) Of course, I do not condone the attacks on Filin (not directly attributed by Iksanov to NT, but for which Iksanov blames NT). However, I fail to understand how one can blame acts of violence on acts of "incivility". I am sure in every office people complain (sometimes accurately and sometimes inaccurately) about their supervisors and colleagues, and sometimes do worse (such as the false petition and letter that you mention), but that does not permit an inference of inevitable, future violence, nor give rise to blame for violence by others.

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Maybe we don't know enough to fully understand what's going on? Because from either side it doesn't make sense.

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The New York Times states: According to the director, "there was 'no doubt' that he was involved in the 2011 publication of erotic photographs that prompted Gennady Yanin, who was at the time the Bolshoi director, to leave the company.

Tsiskaridze rejects this charge categorically. In the warring interviews in Snob magazine about which the NYT reported, Tsiskaridze stated that he could not possibly have been behind the publication of the sex photos because one of the women pictured is a fellow Godparent, which in Orthodox practice effectively makes them relatives, but that Iksanov "not being Orthodox" (Iksanov is of Tatar origin) could not understand these things.

http://www.snob.ru/m...ine/entry/57151

This may not mean anything, but in this TV report from a few years ago about Tsiskaridze as teacher, there is footage of Yanin taking Tsiskaridze's class. He's the first person you see.

I wish the press would be clearer in relating the back story. Yanin is still at the Bolshoi, albeit no longer as company manager.

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I do not condone the acts upon Gennady Yanin, which Iksanov attributes to NT (but without showing his alleged proof), nor the filing of false petitions and letters (attributed by others to NT.) Of course, I do not condone the attacks on Filin (not directly attributed by Iksanov to NT, but for which Iksanov blames NT). However, I fail to understand how one can blame acts of violence on acts of "incivility". I am sure in every office people complain (sometimes accurately and sometimes inaccurately) about their supervisors and colleagues, and sometimes do worse (such as the false petition and letter that you mention), but that does not permit an inference of inevitable, future violence, nor give rise to blame for violence by others.

The analogy I would make is to the state of political discourse in the US. Even if you take the personal attacks on Obama out of the equation, the number of people who've stated publicly that they would meet any attempt to limit the number and type of weapons they own with gunfire creates a different environment -- more threatening, more chaotic, more prone to irrationality and violence -- than rational discussion and the assumption that there is political compromise in every situation: things we don't like, things that are unfair, things that enforce a majority's gains, things that the powers that be have messed up royally.

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Quote:

“It was a lot more than criticising the theater. Going to the top artists in the nation to ask them to sign a petition based on outright lies about the state of the current administration is the type of action that would get most people fired on the spot.”

It seems to me that criticising the theatre's management is not the same as criticising the theatre.

The letter of the top artists of the nation did not contain a single grain of ‘outright lies about the state of the current administration’. In fact, no lies at all. Please open this site, roll the page down and see a scan of this letter with signatures of 12 top artists: http://tikandelaki.l...com/322564.html

The letter suggested that in order to maintain the status of the Bolshoi as a leading theatre the changes are needed after the changeover at the end of December 2012 of the Director General A.G.Iksanov who has been holding the post since 2000.

That’s all. Nothing else has been said about the current administration. And it was true that Mr. Iksanov’s contract was due to expire in December 2012. Where are the ‘outright lies’?

Then Mr.Iksanov’s contract was extended till the end of 2014 and some top artists began apologising.

I also heard about good relationship between Tsiskaridze and Yanin when during the latest London tour they were sharing the dressing room at Covent Garden. Mr. Iksanov’s statement that he is in ‘no doubt' that NT was involved in the 2011 publication of Yanin’s photos has puzzled me. The laptop was stolen by someone, the personal mail and files were broken into, the unseemly pictures were e-mailed to 3000 people all over the world - and Yanin resigned. Why the management didn’t insist afterwards on investigation into these criminal actions and on punishment for the culprits?

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When major artists who had signed the petition were asked why they did, after it was made public, they went on the record to say that Tsiskaridze told them different stories -- different to each person -- about the reason for the petition: Filin was about to resign or not sign a new contract, Filin's contract was not going to be renewed, etc., and it was crucial to ensure that someone with concern for the artists was going to be his replacement. It wasn't what was in the letter, but how the signatures were obtained. Many were retracted when the signees found out that they were lied to.

Iksanov is on shaky ground if he accuses Tsiskaridze of being behind the Yanin smear campaign, unless he has proof.

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Quote:

"Filin was about to resign or not sign a new contract, Filin's contract was not going to be renewed, etc."

Sorry, Helene, you are confusing something. The letter was not about Filin. It was about the end of Iksanov's contract.

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You are correct: I shouldn't have posted quickly while running out the door.

If my post had read, "Iksanov was about to resign or not sign a new contract, Iksanov's contract was not going to be renewed, etc." this would have been better in some way? This issue has nothing to do with the attack on Filin, but speaks to Iksanov's assertion that Tsiskaridze helped foster a specific atmosphere at the theater.

After the petition went public, at least two major artists who signed the petition went on record,

"I was told that your contract had not been renewed; and, being afraid that the theater could get a person who is incompetent in music, I signed the letter." (Yelena Obraztsova)

""Nikolay Maksimovich told me that the third term of Iksanov's contract is expiring, and that he is not eligible for a fourth term according to the law. Tsiskaridze gave me a list of people, and I put my signature on it. I didn't have time to read the letter, I was working at the Conservatory," said the singer." (Zurab Sotkilava)

Again, this is not about what was in the petition, but how Tsiskaridze obtained the signatures, which speaks to his character, both the in Obraztsova quote, where what he said was technically true, but there was no need for a petition if Iksanov's contract was to be renewed, and in his misrepresentation of the legal issue to Sotkilava. Major artists generally do not go out of their way to have to make publicly embarrassing retractions.

It's after December 2012, and, obviously, Iksanov is still there. He even gave a little speech before the "La Bayadere" transmission.

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Astonishing! The last thing the Bolshoi needs is a ‘Gergiev figure’. Gergiev is someone who loves the opera so much he completely disregards the ballet, and the consequences of having an international globe-trotting ballet-phobe in charge have been disastrous for the company that unfortunately doesn’t have a Tsiskaridze figure in its midst with the guts to challenge the everyday abuses of power that exist within the Kirov Ballet.

And why are accusations about the Yanin scandal still being made? Why is there still a question mark over this when surely this criminal act should have been thoroughly investigated by the police and charges brought against whoever was guilty? I sincerely hope that whoever attacked Filin doesn’t get away with it in the same way that those responsible for Yanin’s on-line attack got away with it.

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They haven't seemed to have made much headway into the cyber attacks on Filin, either. Had the cyber attackers from last year been identified, it's possible the physical attack would not have occurred.

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Russia is generally lawless at the current moment - the Filin incident (tragedy, shocking attack) is just a very prominent, very extreme example of a widespread phenomena. Someone with money, power, an agenda, whatever doesn't like you, wants something from you that you won't deliver, anything like that . . . you get threatened or worse. This is not an isolated incident.

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I think perhaps to expect Tsiskardze to behave like a corporate employee instead of a member of a communist collective is to forget his cultural history? If Gregorivich is a dinosaur, perhaps Tsiskardze is a Wooly Mammoth? (perhaps he fancies himself a sabre tooth tiger).

This is, of course, an art form that treasures its ancients, but maybe not in management issues.

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Russia is generally lawless at the current moment - the Filin incident (tragedy, shocking attack) is just a very prominent, very extreme example of a widespread phenomena. Someone with money, power, an agenda, whatever doesn't like you, wants something from you that you won't deliver, anything like that . . . you get threatened or worse. This is not an isolated incident.

I totally agree, there was an intriguing back story to the Briantsev murder as I've been told the fire at his theatre was arson and no accident. Russia is a lawless place and has a corrupt judiciary so framing an innocent person is very easy if you have the money (better still a lever for blackmail) to pay off/threaten the judge.

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It seems obvious that Iksanov is using the percieved ill-will in the press against Tsiskaridze to his own advantage. Filin has said he was not involved; his relationship with Yanin suggests that he was not involved in that. Obviously Tsiskaridze has been a thorn in Iksanov's side for a long time and now Iksanov has the perfect opportunity to try and force him out. The emotional maturity level of all those involved is low (and Tsiskaridze has not handled himself in the best manner), but to equate complaints about management/starting a petition with creating an environment where Filin was attacked seems absurd.

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It wasn't a public petition like when a full-page newspaper ad in the New York Times advocating the release of a political prisoner and signed by Nobel laureates is published. It was an under-handed coup attempt when, as a man with a TV pulpit and who's the go-to guy for a pithy quote, his attempts at persuasion failed, and he obtained signatures by misrepresenting the situation to fellow artists. It was never meant to go public: it was leaked to the press.

Lawlessness breeds lawlessness, and step one is to try to establish illegitimacy. That he's been agitating relentlessly within the company is no secret. It's no surprise that, while the translation of Tsiskaridze's literal words were that if Iksanov were Orthodox, he'd understand Tsiskaridze's relationship to Yanin, does anyone really think he wasn't also saying "He's not one of us"? He's the self-proclaimed "preserver of ballet orthodoxy," which is funny when you think about it, with the Bolshoi rep having works like "Spartacus" and "Carmen" so affiliated with the company. You'd think from his words that he was chaneling Petipa, not Grigorovich.

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