Olga Smirnova (Ольга Смирнова) and Semyon Chudin (Семен Чудин), The Bolshoi Theatre ballet, in Grand pas Classique, music by Daniel Auber, choreography by Victor Gsovsky. Benois de la Danse 2017, Brilliant Quarter of Century, shot in the Bolshoi Theatre, Moscow on 31.5.2017.
Olga Smirnova (Rus. Ольга Смирнова) was born 1991. She is currently a prima ballerina with the Bolshoi Ballet. Born in St Petersburg, Smirnova comes from a family with no connections with ballet. Her mother encouraged her to take up the art at the Vaganova Academy where she studied under Lyudmila Kovaleva. She participated in the academy’s tours across Europe and Japan, performing in the 2004 presentation arranged jointly with the Royal Ballet School. In 2011, immediately after her graduation, she was recruited by the Bolshoi and spent just one day in the corps de ballet before taking on solos. Having joined the company as a soloist, she was promoted to first soloist in her first season and to leading soloist at the end of her second season in 2013.
Semyon Chudin (Rus. Семен Чудин) is a Principal Dancer with Bolshoi Theatre Ballet. He was born in Barnaul. Graduated from Novosibirsk Choreographic College in 2003 (teacher Alexander Shelemov, Александр Шелемов). He joined the Universal Ballet Company under the direction of Oleg Vinogradov (Seoul, Republic of Korea) in 2003 and remained there until the year 2007 (teacher Evgeny Neff, Евгений Нефф). In 2007-08, he was the principal with the Zurich Ballet (Switzerland), where he rehearsed under François Petit and Jean-François Boisnon. In 2008-11, he was the principal with the K. S. Stanislavsky and Vl. I. Nemirovich-Danchenko Moscow Academic Music Theatre (teacher Arkady Nikolaev). In 2007-2011, he was a guest soloist with Novosibirsk State Academic Opera and Ballet Theatre. In 2008 he danced as a guest soloist at the Mikhailovsky Theatre in St. Petersburg. In the season 2011/12 joined the Bolshoi ballet (teacher Alexander Vetrov, Rus. Александр Ветров).
Photos by Jack Devant Ballet Photography with kind permission of the Benois de la Danse and Bolshoi Theatre, special thanks to Nina Kudriavtseva-Loory and Regina Nikiforova.