Life at the Bolshoi Ballet Academy
So my arrival back in Moscow went extremely smoothly; I arrived on Sunday 12th January with no complications, ready to start class straight away on the Monday. I have to admit I was feeling a little trepidation about how my body was going to take the first day back but I was really pleased to discover that my training programme that I did over the holiday kept my fitness up to the level that it needs to be; and I was able to slot straight back into my routine.
On the first day only three of us were back from my class, so it was almost as if I was receiving private coaching. And, on top of that, the following Tuesday we already had our first rehearsals for La Fille Mal Guardee, the chosen production of the Academy this year, which will be performed in February. Since then it’s literally been non-stop of rehearsals well into the night; I’ve been lucky enough to be chosen as second cast for three main sections: friends, the basket girls and the waltz. I’m able to rehearse with lots of fantastic teachers and I’m thoroughly enjoying all the time on the stage. I’m also getting the chance to dance with second and third year students which is a great opportunity.
So it’s been a bit frantic since I got back and it’s also been really cold, reaching minus 26 at one point this week so I haven’t been taking many trips out. And, when I have to make a trip to the supermarket, I make sure that it’s quick and I’m well wrapped up!
I had a wonderful time at home over Christmas and the New Year. It really set me up well for the second semester. My dancing was never far away though, as I mentioned already, I followed a strict training regime by going to the gym every day and doing a ballet barre and stretching.
Plus I was lucky enough to do a photo shoot at Wentworth Woodhouse, a grade 1 listed building in Wentworth in Rotherham, South Yorkshire which is about 10 mins around the corner from my home!
It is the largest privately-owned house in Europe and really consists of two houses of totally different architectural styles built back-to-back. It was built by the First Marquess of Rockingham between 1725 & 1750; the west front of the house in the baroque style & the east front in the later palladian style.
Most of the shots were taken in the majestic ballroom in the East Front measuring over 600 feet with its courts and buildings covering three acres or more of ground. It was in the ballroom in 1912 that Anna Pavlova herself danced for the King and Queen of England (who would have thought, right on my very own doorstep!) I cant believe I’ve followed in her footsteps. Admittedly, the day afterwards my muscles were screaming after doing the same pose over and over again but the experience of being in such a historic and wonderful venue will stay with me for ever.
Below are some of the behind the scenes photos taken by my Mum. The actual photos were taken by Chris Sedgewick, a good friend of my Mum’s, and my teacher from Bristol Russian Ballet School, Chika, loaned me the beautiful tutus! I will upload some of the actual photos on my blog over the coming weeks.
And so I’ve almost completed my second January here in Moscow and am feeling like I’ve really hit the ground running. Lots of exciting things are happening at the moment that I’m really glad to be a part of and I’m really looking forward to how this year is going to progress.
Just as a last note, I wanted to upload to my blog the performance of the Small Grand Pas that I danced in the Winter Performance before I came home, but, due to internet problems, I haven’t been able to. I have, however, now uploaded the audition performance and will upload the actually performance when I come back to the UK in June (or beforehand, if I find decent internet over here before I come home).