Natalia Somova (rus. Наталья Сомова) as Nikiya and Sergei Polunin (Rus. Сергей Полунин) as Solor in La Bayadere, choreography by Natalia Makarova after Marius Petipa, music by Ludwig Minkus. Act 1 vase variation (Searching for Solor) and their first duet. Shot on 19.12.2014 in Stanislavsky Theatre in Moscow, Russia.
Natalia Somova (rus. Наталья Сомова) is senior principal with Moscow Stanislavsky Ballet Company. She was graduated from the Krasnodar State Institute of Choreography and Krasnodar State University of Culture. She was 1999-2001 soloist of the Krasnodar Music Theatre. From 2001 she became the soloist of Moscow Stanislavsky Ballet Company. Natalia is Honoured Artist of Russia since 2013.
Sergei Polunin (Rus.: Сергей Влади́мирович Полу́нин; born November 20, 1989) is a ballet dancer who was formerly a principal dancer with the British Royal Ballet and is currently a principal dancer with The Stanislavsky Music Theatre (Moscow) and the Novosibirsk State Academic Opera and Ballet Theatre (Novosibirsk) in Russia.
Sergei Polunin was born in Ukraine, Kherson. From the age of 4 until 8 he trained at a gymnastics academy and then spent another four years at the Kyiv State Choreographic Institute. His mother Galina Polunina moved with him to Kyiv while his father Vladimir Polunin worked in Portugal to support them.
After Sergei Polunin graduated from the Kyiv Choreographic Institute he joined the British Royal Ballet School at the age of 13 in 2003, sponsored by the Rudolf Nureyev Foundation. He became a first soloist at the Royal Ballet in 2009. In June 2010 Polunin became the Royal Ballet’s youngest ever principal. After two successful years, on January 24, 2012, Polunin announced his resignation from the company with immediate effect. Several months later, in summer 2012, Polunin was invited to Russia by its famous ballet dancer and an artistic director of ballet of the two Russian theatres Igor Zelensky, and became a principal dancer with The Stanislavsky Music Theatre and Novosibirsk State Academic Opera and Ballet Theatre. On April 4–7, 2013, it was reported that Polunin had walked out on the Schaufuss Ballet’s performance of ‘Midnight Express’ just days before its opening night.
Polunin has received numerous awards, including the Prix de Lausanne and Youth America Grand Prix in 2006, and in 2007 was named the Young British Dancer of the year. Polunin was shortlisted as the best male dancer for The 2014 National Dance awards.
The New York Times described Polunin as “a fabulous dancer, with a steely technique and beautiful line” in its review of “Alice’s Adventures in Wonderland” (2011) when he danced as the Knave, who doubled as Alice’s romantic interest.
Photos by Jack Devant © with kind permission of the Stanislavsky and Nemirovich-Danchenko Moscow Music Theatre, special thanks Irina Gorbunova.