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Posts posted by solo

  1. To make sense of information by the Russian press agencies is not easy sometimes.

    At midday the INTERFAX agency had reported that the condition of the artistic director of the Bolshoi Ballet Sergei Filin remains serious and he is kept in intensive care:


    Two hours later ITAR-TASS reported that Sergei Filin had been discharged from the hospital.

    “He is making his way to the Theatre for work”, said the Bolshoi Theatre’s press officer Katerina Novikova. According to her, Filin feels fine and intends to be present today at the rehearsal of the ballet “The Taming of the Shrew”:


  2. Thank you, volcanohunter, for your very accurate analysis.

    In the most recent article I read something, which came as a surprise for me - the news about some “Ballet Traditions” fund, which doesn't have a website. An extract from: http://izvestia.ru/news/561760

    "From January 1, 2014, the post of Advisor to the Artistic Director of the ballet company will be abolished. According to “Izvestia” newspaper, the Bolshoi’d press officer Katerina Novikova said that Dilyara Timergazina who is holding this post at the moment had been already notified of her dismissal.

    According to “Izvestia”, immediate boss of Timergazina the Artistic Director of the ballet company Sergei Filin had been warned in advance of the non-renewal of the (her?) contract with the Bolshoi. His contract will expire in 2016. Also, according to the newspaper’s source, the Artistic Director was offered a one-year leave to make a recovery, which he turned down.

    It is known that Dilyara Timergazina is a graduate of one of the best business schools in the USA - a New York University Stern School of Business. In addition to her work at the Bolshoi she also works as the Director General of "The Ballet Traditions" creative fund where Sergei Filin is the President and his wife Maria Prorvich is the Executive Director. Timergazina's son Dmitry is married to a Bolshoi’s leading soloist Olga Smirnova."

  3. That's obvious enough, but I would hope that when court documents or testimony are quoted, they are reproduced accurately.

    Me too. I don't know if they are - I suppose only the courts and those with access to them will know for sure.

    Dear volcanohunter, I would like to share your hope but I doubt that we will see the perfect trustworthy report of the court hearing.

    Agree with the last statement. I noticed that even in the lawyer's personal report online there were omissions of some important information pieces, which popped up in the newpaper reports later. To be fair to the lawyer he admitted himself that he was “short of words to make at least some sort of evaluation of what we hear”.

  4. Quote:

    “Ample possible explanations exist…”

    I completely agree, puppytreats. My question about “what was the ballet administration doing during all those seven years” was purely rhetoric.

    The failure of the Mariinsky’s ballet administration to champion the company’s rights and requirements proved again that Gergiev made it completely rightless. Mariinsky Theatre lives under totalitarian regime and, unfortunately, the great ballet company suffers from it.

  5. Quote:

    “… Islom Baimuradov stated at the time, "why wasn't the ballet administration consulted ... in what was needed in terms of rehearsal space?"

    Islom Baimuradov could better ask his own boss - the head of the ballet company: what was the ballet administration doing during all those seven years? Why couldn’t they demand that the ballet company’ requirements are taken into account?


    “… it is his devotion to the old Bolshoi style and Grigorovitch (If I understand from afar) that seems a bad choice for the Maryinski's school.”

    Why will devotion to Grigorovich be bad for the school? It should not be forgotten that Yuri Grigorovich graduated in 1946 from Leningrad Choreographic School renamed later after A.Vaganova. He danced at Kirov Theatre for 10 years, choreographed ballet scenes there in 5 operas and created his fill-length ballets - “The Stone Flower” and “The Legend of Love”. The latter is considered by some as his best ballet and is still in the Mariinsky Ballet’s repertoir.

  6. Here is the TV News about Sergei Filin’s arrival at Moscow airport:


    He said that his left eye had improved very significantly and with his right eye he can see his fingers.

    Sergei’s sister Elena gave an interview:


    She quoted his words: “I can see and move around independently.” He said that he is ready to start working and is planning to come to the theatre on the 16th Sept. for the auditions of new young dancers and on the 17th for the meeting of the company.

    She confirmed that he can see 80% with his left eye but there are some rises and falls.

    A progress has been made with his right eye too. He can see large objects. If he closes his left eye, then he can see with his right eye his fingers, which wasn’t the case earlier. The treatment will continue.

    May be he will stay in Moscow for a month, may be longer.

    When asked if he has no problem with watching performances and rehearsals, Elena replied: “Of course. He went to London and saw the Bolshoi’s performance there.”

  7. Hard to stop a thought once it pushes to cross my mind. And that the drama stopped then and there with the arrest...? And that there's a rotten, way deeper ongoing turmoil at the moment, right now, even within the current roster perhaps..? Not difficult at all to imagine.

    True, the drama didn't stop with the arrest but continued: worries for Filin with his numerous operations, Pronin losing his job, Tsiskaridze's contract not being renewed, Iksanov's contract terminated, Vorontsova’s resignation, the dancers and staff waiting now for unavoidable reshuffle in the company (opera manager M.Fikhtengolts has already lost his job) and so on.

    But I personally do not imagine all this while watching excellent performances by the Bolshoi company. Thank you, Bolshoi, for the wonderful three weeks!

  8. Wow...what a saga...

    While watching the troupe in London, I couldn't help but to keep linking the sickness of all this with the moving bodies onstage...

    Not on any account could I do that. I have seen 19 performances out of 21 (work prevented me from seeing 2 more) and enjoyed them all. Every single preview and review in the press mentioned the Bolshoi's problems but the dancers didn't disappoint. I enjoyed their powerful exciting performances, some were truly outstanding and unforgettable, 'The Flames of Paris' among them.

  9. The programme “Great Expectations” on RUSSIA 24 TV channel today:


    had interviews with the acting artistic director Galina Stepanenko and the former ballet company manager Ruslan Pronin.

    Pronin said that although he and Tsiskaridze were not special friends but his own departure from the Bolshoi is linked to the situation with Tsiskaridze, i.e. with the way how the administration was ‘squeezing-out’ this Principal dancer from the theatre: ‘I didn’t like the methods used by them’ Pronin said. ‘They realised that they cannot rely on me and our paths diverged.’

    In the meantime Mikhail Messerer said in his interview that Angelina Vorontsova is rehearsing the role of Diana Mireille de Poitier in his production of “The Flames of Paris” at the Mikhailovsky Theatre and he hopes to see her also in the role of Jeanne in July. When asked if she had joined the Mikhailovsky company Messerer replied : ‘For a start she will appear with us in “The Flames of Paris”. Further actions depend on her - whether she chooses to stay with us or not. She has many offers.


  10. Volcanohunter wrote:
    "There are plenty of dancers ... who don't go globe-trotting much but who don't lack an "international reputation" as a result."

    I absolutely agree with that. Dancers make their own choices. And Tsiskaridze is selective which doesn't make him a snob.
    He always expressed his admiration for Paris Opera Ballet and Mariinsky and guested with them. Someone wrote: "At the Grand Opera he has had only one-off appearances." Well, he danced in three ballets there:
    Nureyev's La Bayadere - 3 performances
    Petit's Clavigo - invited for 2 performances but was badly injured at the dress rehearsal.
    Nureyev's The Nutcracker

    I know that he had offers from La Scala and other companies but turned them down because the Bolshoi was the most important thing in the world for him.
    The invitations, which appealed to him, were from Mariinsky. He danced there in The Legend of Love, Swan Lake, Bluebird and Desire in The Sleeping Beauty, La Sylphide, Manon, Sheherazade, The Rubies, The Diamonds, and Forsythe's ballets. Although the Mariinsky is very conscious of its own style, nevertheless, Tsiskaridze who is an epitome of the Bolshoi style was the only outsider invited to guest with Mariinsky every year and was even offered a special Tsiskaridze gala there.
    This was his choice.

  11. Mme Hermine asked:

    "Help from a translator on this short report?"

    That short report had nothing to do with the topic discussed. It was about the arrests of a corrupt customs official and a prosecutor who played dishonest tricks with the jewellery factory.

  12. Hello, Puppytreats!

    After my words: “Rumours should remain rumours” -

    you asked: “do the innocent, vulnerable, or naive not merit protection?”

    My answer is: Absolutely! Everyone needs protection, especially the innocent, vulnerable, or naive.

    I was puzzled why my phrase about rumours prompted your question?

    It wasn’t written in defence of improprieties (God forbid to do so) but just as my personal attitude to rumours. They place us on a shaky ground: who knows the original source of the rumours, who let them out and why, who passed them on and perhaps embroidered them and who is trying to reap benefits from those rumours. I personally prefer not to discuss them publicly. This was the only meaning of that phrase.

    Hello, Cygnet!

    How interesting that you gave a link to my translation made 10 years ago when I had more time and was writing here as ‘Coda’. When after a long gap I tried to write something here again, all my desperate efforts to ‘sign in’ proved to be futile and I had to re-register as ‘Solo’. So we met again.

  13. Quote:

    "They recall plenty of rumors of sexual favors with government officials in return for lobbying Yuri for roles."

    Rumours should remain rumours.

    The reality was that when watching the Bolshoi Ballet’s performances under Grigorovich nobody was questioning why that particular dancer was given a role. It was given only to those who deserved it. Just remember the names who were shining in the years of his directorship: Maximova, Vasiliev, Kondratyeva, both Fadeyechevs, Timofeyeva, Bessmertnova, Liepa (both), Semenyaka, Lavrovsky, Vladimirov, Sorokina, Gordeyev, Pavlova, Godunov, Adyrkhaeva, Mukhamedov, Mikhalchenko, Taranda, Semizorova, Klevtsov, Golikova, Vetrov, Ananiashvili, etc. etc. The full list would be enormous.

    It is not for nothing that those times are remembered as ‘the Golden Age of the Bolshoi’ - because Grigorovich’s standards were so high. The quality of performance was his goal and he was achieving it by working with talented dancers. He had an eagle eye for talents.

  14. It is not surprising that Nikolai Tsiskaridze reproached Volochkova for improper and loud self-advertisement. There was time, about 10 years ago, when Volochkova enjoyed protection of wealthy friends and could have for her gala concerts enormous adverts spanning the whole width of Moscow streets, with huge name on them: ‘Anastasia Volochkova’ and petite letters below: ‘with Bolshoi Ballet dancers’. Nikolai was absolutely right to protest against this kind of posters degrading her Bolshoi’s colleagues as backup dancers.

    However, when some male dancers refused to dance with the ‘uncomfortable’ ballerina, Tsiskaridze was the only one who told the Director that he will continue partnering her and started rehearsing duet from ‘Raymonda’ with her. During this rehearsal she was called to the Director’s office and informed of her dismissal. It was confirmed by both of them in numerous interviews.

    There is an inaccuracy in this article: “Her most recent partner, Yevgeni Ivanchenko, cannot dance with her fearing possible back injury.” The fact is that Ivanchenko, a tall, strong and skilful partner, gave Volochkova a lot of support. Being a Mariinsky’s dancer he travelled with her to Krasnodar and other cities and partnered her in various galas. He was loyal to her.

  15. Yuri Grigorovich was mentioned here several times, even as someone “knowing which buttons to push (in this case, seeking out a disgruntled dancer) and letting the rest play itself out.”

    Grigorovich is not like that. He is a person of an explosive temperament. As soon as he was unhappy, he would snap, tell people off and roar orders. When he was upset with something, it was better to keep out of his way. At the same time his authority was incontestable and he enjoyed overwhelming and genuine respect in the company. Even when he appears at the Bolshoi now, just a few times a year, the atmosphere there changes. People start informing each other: ‘Grig is in the theatre today’, and some dancers admit that they do their class more conscientiously.

    Here is some information on what Grigorovich was up to in recent months.

    Very soon after the opening night of ‘Ivan the Terrible’ in November 2012 the choreographer was taken ill. Doctors discovered that he had 90% constriction of the inner surface of the carotid artery, which could lead to severe paralysis or may be death. On the 5th of December, he was operated at the clinic of the First Moscow State Medical University. http://www.rg.ru/201...ovich-site.html

    The 2nd of January 2013 saw his 86th birthday. He went to recuperate after the operation to Anapa, a Black Sea resort.

    On the 3rd of March ITAR-TASS reported that Grigorovich did casting and began work on his production of ‘Coppelia’ at his ballet theatre in Krasnodar, in the south of Russia: http://www.itar-tass...culture&i=39650

    As long as I saw and remember Grig’s rise and reign in Russian ballet it would be impossible for me to imagine him pushing any dancer, especially the dancer he has chosen in the corps and fostered and promoted to the top roles, towards criminal actions.

  16. A new turn in this story.

    Moscow. 10 March /ITAR-TASS/. The Artistic Director of the Bolshoi Ballet company Sergei Filin may not come back to Russia if the assault case is not seen through to the end. This was announced today by Filin’s friend Grigoryi Belkin in his interview to the ‘News of the Week’ programme on Russia-1 Channel.

    ‘I am afraid that if this case of assault (attempt) on Sergei is not seen through to the end after all and consequently his safety in Russia is not secured, he might not come back’, Belkin said. ‘He is receiving a huge number of offers from abroad, from the world’s top theatres.’


  17. Machine translation can be confusing sometimes. For example, the Russian word for ‘owl’ is ‘filin’, hence the word OWL appeared instead of the AD’s name, etc.

    I found these two paragraphs worrying:

    As confirmed by the “Gazeta.ru” ‘s source, based on some evidence, the interrogation of Dmitrichenko lasted for 18 hours.

    ‘As per official version, his lawyer was with him, but according to unofficial version the lawyer went out, after several hours of interrogation, to buy some food; whereupon he was prevented from coming back to his client for a long time. After some time Dmitrichenko made his confession’, the source said.

    A surprise for all, according to the source, was the statement by the company’s manager Ruslan Pronin with respect to the straight-talk held on Thursday by the Artistic Director of the troupe Sergei Filin with a ballet dancer Batyr Annadurdyev who is on a friendly footing with Pavel Dmitrichenko and was also called to testify at the Investigation Committee of the Russian Federation. Allegedly, there were some threats and accusations made by Filin against Annadurdyev whereby he signed his notice of resignation from the theater. The troupe spoke for the dancer and about ineligibility of any charges against him.

  18. . 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.

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