03 April 2011


Corps de ballet at the Mariinsky Theater (Kirov Ballet)

Ulyana Lopatkina, as the Swan and then with her daughter at the studio

Evguenya Obraztsova

At ten years old, girls audition for and begin in the first class at the prestigious Vagaonova Academy

Svetlana Zakharova without makeup, stunning.

Svetlana in costume for Swan Lake

I saw this 2009 film on Netflix Instant Play months ago, and still think about it regularly. It's not my favorite movie or even documentary, but it contained a ton of fascinating ballet info and interviews with some of Russia's most talented dancers in the Kirov ballet. To tell the truth, I've watched it over and over again just to learn more.

I can't get over the extreme dedication that this art requires, or the slightly troublesome element of seeing those 10 year old girls presented like prizewinning dogs or horses, or my girl crushes on all of these enchanting women.

All images are my own screen captures from Bertrand Normand's documentary.

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