She was selected to study at the prestigious Bolshoi Academy in Moscow when she was 15 years old. She entered the Bolshoi Ballet right after the academy and is now in her mid-thirties; she dances in the corps de ballet. She admitted frankly, “I will not get any roles because I don’t have the typical look that they want.” However, she has danced principal roles numerous times as a guest performer with other companies and at galas. She has also received a number of awards throughout her career, including an “Honoured Artist” designation in Russia.
“Some of the younger dancers who come into the company are quite arrogant,” she observed, “because they think that getting into the Bolshoi is their final accomplishment.” She would like to give guidance to the younger dancers, but, she said regretfully, “it doesn’t work that way; only the directors and teachers can talk to them.”
“I have given a lot to my career,” she said tiredly. Her priorities now are on her family and five year old son. “I would like to be the mother that my mother was to me”, she expressed wistfully. “Sometimes I must attend rehearsals in the evening, and I’m just sitting there, not even dancing, and I think, ‘I should be home with my son instead’, but, I also have a responsibility to my work.”
“Perhaps with another company, I would be principal. But,” she told me assuredly, “I won’t dance anywhere else; my life and my career are here. I am very proud to be a dancer in the Bolshoi; it is the best in the world.”