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interview with
Igor Zelensky

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... to our coverage of one of the highlights of the 2003 UK dance season -
the visit of the Kirov to London. This page is the index to the CriticalDance Special Feature on the Royal Opera House season.

Here you will find links to previews, interviews and reviews both from our
own writers and those in the national press. We also include an image
gallery and links to the websites of some of the organisations connected with the visit.

But most of all we want to hear your views. So do post your own comments
about the dancers, the ballets and all things Kirov in the various topics
of our dedicated forum, which can be reached from the box below.

If you are a new or recent visitor to CriticalDance we have a Guide
to help you find your way around.
We hope you enjoy the Kirov London season 2003, whether in person at the Royal Opera House or reading about it here.
There was a time in the not so distant past when London audiences were consistently denied sight of the Russian companies, a time when that infamous iron curtain was lifted only on those rare occasions when relationships between Downing Street and the Kremlin happened to be good and sadly for us ballet lovers that wasn’t very often. Glasnost in the ‘80’s changed all that and now visits from Russian companies and Russian artists are a regular occurrence. In the past our knowledge of Russian style was all too often limited only to those dancers bold enough to look beyond the constraints of the system, attracted by the diversity of the western repertoire.
Igor Zelensky is a man back from the brink. Two years ago it was not at all certain that he would ever dance again. He spent six months lying flat in bed after two operations on a herniated disc. He returned to dancing last November and although he is not back to full fitness – he is still not able to lift ballerinas – he has big plans for himself. All that time lying in bed gave him plenty of opportunity for reflection: “For six months I couldn’t move and I thought how I would react if someone now wanted to give me my own company – gave me the chance to be a director. But I still had a chance to be a dancer.” He has to dance.

Take a look at our collection of images relating to the Kirov visit. 
For details of an exhibition of Millicent Hodson's drawings of 'Le Sacre Du Printemps', click here.

Click on the websites below for more information on the Kirov Ballet.