Tala Lee-Turton

Life at the Bolshoi Ballet Academy

Debut on the Bolshoi Theatre Stage

February was such a fantastic month that I really expected to find March ever so slightly disappointing in comparison, however, I couldn’t have been more wrong!  I’ve been so busy this month that I almost don’t know where to start.  I suppose most significant was my debut on the Bolshoi Theatre stage!  We were very lucky to take the waltz and adage of Оживленный сад from Le Corsaire to show as part of the Russian Ballet Competition 2015, held in the Bolshoi Theatre.

Tala Lee-Turton Bolshoi Ballet Academy Life at the Bolshoi Ballet Academy

About to perform on the Bolshoi Theatre stage!

It felt very special to wear the Bolshoi’s own costumes and have our hair done by the stylists that work for the company.  Indeed, finding my name on the back of the dressing room door was a dream come true.  In addition, we, of course, were able to view all the competitors of the competition who came from a variety of schools across Russia including the other famous Russian ballet school, Vaganova.  All the Bolshoi students won awards which we were, of course, very proud of and excited about!

That wasn’t the only performance of the month, however; at the beginning of March was the Academy’s Spring Performance and my class were chosen to perform the Katerina variation, choreography by Moiseyev, that we have been preparing for our character exam at the end of the year.  It’s a Ukranian folk dance in which we dance, arms linked, in a line making a very visually effective ensemble piece.  It was lots of fun to wear the tradition Ukranian headpieces and to be able to perform such an upbeat lively number.

Tala Lee-Turton Bolshoi Ballet Academy Life at the Bolshoi Ballet Academy

In our Ukranian character dance costumes.

The weekend that followed was actually a mini holiday for us; we were allowed the Saturday and the Monday off! Therefore, I took the opportunity to go with friends to watch Ekaterina Shipulina and Semyon Chudin perform in Giselle.  I think I can certainly say that Giselle is my favourite of the classical ballets as it’s probably the deepest emotionally and, therefore, seems more accessible from the point of view of the real world.

With my friends at the theatre!

With my friends at the theatre!

We waited the whole day for the student tickets which were standing tickets at the very top of the theatre, however, the view was a good one and, of course, it was really worth it!  Chudin might possibly be my favourite male dancer at the moment as his technique is flawless and, through that, he delivers an unparalleled performance quality.  It was also really interesting to watch the acting scenes.  Last year we spent quite a lot of time working on these in acting class and so I could really appreciate the nuances of the performances in these sections.

Tala Lee-Turton Bolshoi Ballet Academy Life at the Bolshoi Ballet Academy

About to watch Giselle

Giselle

Giselle – Bolshoi Ballet

Lastly, our ballet teacher, Revich, organised for us to watch company class, rehearsals and the matinee performance of Cinderella of the Stanislavsky Ballet company, also based in Moscow.  This was a really wonderful experience as I’ve never before had free-rein to wander around a theatre while the company is carrying out their daily routines in this way.  I particularly enjoyed watching the technique classes at the beginning of the day and seeing how they differ from the classes we take as students; the professionals know exactly what their bodies need and so are free to embellish the exercises as they please!  We also recognised a lot of former students of the Bolshoi who have gone on to work for the company.

Tala Lee-Turton Bolshoi Ballet Academy

Watching Stanislavsky company class with Nere and Marika

Cinderella

Cinderella

So all in all it’s been a very eventful few weeks, in which the time has simply flown by.  Already next month we’ll be starting work on our ballet exam and no doubt the pace of things will quicken even more!

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13 comments on “Debut on the Bolshoi Theatre Stage

  1. pamt1
    March 29, 2015

    What wonderful experiences! 🐱🐱🐱

  2. jennhulme
    March 30, 2015

    Well done Tala – your enthusiastic writing almost allows us to be there with you! Jen x

  3. tutusbymonica
    March 31, 2015

    as ever such wonderful writing – I enjoy this blog so much – it is like being there . So nice to hear how much you appreciate this experience and so generous of you to give your time to write and share it.

    • Tala Lee-Turton
      April 1, 2015

      Thank you, Monica! I really love sharing my experiences through my blog; it’s just so lovely to hear that my posts are enjoyable reads! Xx

  4. Mike Martin
    March 31, 2015

    Huge hugs of congratulations from me and all the Water Rats, Tala. Sooooo proud of you! 😉

    • Tala Lee-Turton
      April 1, 2015

      Thank you Mike! Really glad you like it!

    • Tala Lee-Turton
      April 1, 2015

      And thank you so much for your ongoing support – it is a significant contribution to making this all possible for me 🙂

  5. therese
    April 13, 2015

    I found your blog by random. Really really really random. And you had me reading the blog from the beginning to the end, last night and this morning. And it’s no joke to stay up until 2a.m. when you have two kids waking up in shifts all night, plus getting out of bed prior to 7! 😉
    I am so impressed by you; so young, so talented, hard working, and so mature in the choices you make, and the way you express yourself on the blog!
    your mom must be proud of you:)
    I wish you all good for the rest of your education, and for your career, and will for sure continue to follow your blog:)
    best regards from Norway.

    • Tala Lee-Turton
      April 13, 2015

      Thank you so much, Therese – that’s really kind of you! I hope you weren’t too tired today as a result of all that reading and the late night?! Are you a dancer or just interested in dance? 🙂

      • therese
        April 13, 2015

        I had a nap while the baby slept, so all went fine, no worries:)
        I was in the dance program in high school (on a really low level), and after high school I didn’t continue dancing, there was not a drop of talent in my bones;)
        And although ballet fascinates me, it’s not something that is a part of my everyday life. I’ve had the pleasure to see the mariinski ballet in st.Petersburg once, and the royal Danish ballet once, but that’s more than 10years ago. But Google is one of my good friends, and I always appreciate to stumble upon interesting blogs, and people with interesting choices in life 🙂

      • Tala Lee-Turton
        April 14, 2015

        Well thank you, again – I hope you continue to enjoy my blog! I have two more months til the end of this year (seems to fly by) which will be packed full of exams and more performances so I’ll definitely have lots to write about! 🙂

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