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News » Natalia Osipova, Dancer

Наталья Осипова: «Идти вперед и развиваться!»
Author: Сергей Элькин
Date: January 23, 2012
Publisher: Частный корреспондент

Самая необычная балерина нашего времени о любимых партиях и любимых театрах. [read more]


How a Banana Tycoon Lured Bolshoi Stars to His Theater
Date: November 20, 2011
Publisher: New York Times

MOSCOW — He is often called Banana King. But Vladimir Kekhman — the fruit magnate who stunned the dance world last week by enticing two of the biggest stars in ballet to quit the eminent Bolshoi and join his far lesser-known Mikhailovsky Theater in St. Petersburg — considers this title an understatement. “I was sort of the Emperor of the Banana,” he said. [read more]


Bolshoi Is Stung by Loss of Two Stars
Date: November 14, 2011
Publisher: New York Times

Natalia Osipova and Ivan Vasiliev, major stars of the ballet world and two of Russia’s best-known classical artists, said on Monday that they were leaving the storied Bolshoi Ballet in Moscow for the Mikhailovsky Theater in St. Petersburg. [read more]

Bolshoi ballet loses leading dancers to theatre in St Petersburg
Date: November 14, 2011
Publisher: The Guardian

Moscow institution regrets the loss of its prima ballerina and principal dancer to ballet troupe led by a Spanish choreographer. [read more]

Почему лучшая молодая балетная пара страны предпочла Большому театру Михайловский?
Author: Жанна Зарецкая
Date: November 14, 2011
Publisher: «Фонтанка.ру»

Cамым громким театральным событием дня стал переход из столичного Большого в петербургский Михайловский театр самой перспективной балетной пары поколения молодых мастеров: Натальи Осиповой и Ивана Васильева. В Большом театре не смогли назвать причин ухода перспективных артистов - артисты сделали это сами, дав первое в Петербурге подробное интервью нашему корреспонденту. [read more]

Bolshoi blow as dance partnership jumps ship to rival
Date: November 14, 2011
Publisher: The Telegraph

One of the Bolshoi Theatre's most promising dance partnerships is leaving its Moscow stage to join the rival Mikhailovsky Theatre in St. Petersburg. [read more]

Osipova and Vasiliev Quit Bolshoi
Author: Super User
Date: November 14, 2011
Publisher: Dance Channel TV

The world of ballet was shaken earlier as two of the most celebrated dancers of Bolshoi Ballet announced that they are leaving. Natalia Osipova and Ivan Vasiliev, the famed principals of Bolshoi, have handed in their notice and announced that they are moving to a much lesser known Mikhailovsky Theatre of Saint Petersburg for the next 5 years. Although it is a well-regarded theatre, it is always overshadowed by Bolshoi and Saint Petersburg’s other ballet company, the world-famous Mariinsky. [read more]

Natalia Osipova, Dancer Natalia Osipova, Dancer Natalia Osipova, Dancer

Natalia Osipova Interview


by Joachim G. Weydanz

Natalia Osipova in "The Nutcracker" à l'Opéra de la Bastille

Personal impressions of a balletomane...

On the 8th and 9th of January 2010, Natalia Osipova danced two performances of Rudolf Nurejev's 1985 version of "Casse-Noisette" (The Nutcracker) in Paris. It was a remarkable debut in two ways: For the first time in her career she danced the role of Clara (Masha) and also for the first time she appeared as guest artist with the renowned Paris Opera Ballet. The expectations of friends and of the public in general were flying high...

At the first performance her partner as Drosselmeier and the Nutcracker-Prince was the young premier danseur étoile, Mathias Heymann. Very well rehearsed and obviously working well together, they formed a winning couple. Unfortunately, Heymann was not able to dance the next performance as well due to a leg injury.
He was replaced by the premier danseur Alessio Carbone.

The vast auditorium of the opera house seats more than 2700 spectators. I was told that all of the 20 performances of "Casse-Noisette" were sold out completely.

I liked Nurejev's staging as well as his choreography, which is based on the old Russian traditional version, but at the same time is visually viable as well
as entertaining for the public of today. I particularly liked the "Snowflakes" at the end of Act I and the pure, classical dancing in Act II. To a large extent, credit must be given to the excellent POB dancers throughout the ranks.

The corps de ballet deserves the highest praise. Their impressive exactness made "Snowflakes" and the "Waltz of the Flowers" intoxicating scenes filled with beautiful movements, which came close to perfection.

For me it was of special interest to see, how Nureyev has stayed close to the original narrative of E.T.A. Hofmann, which is really based on the nightmare world of the late
German Romanticism. One never loses track of the story, which is being told in a consistent manner, without deviating from dramatic cohesiveness.

And how was Natasha?

I first saw Natalia Osipova in May 2007 with the Bolshoi Ballet in Munich, dancing a variation in "Don Quixote". At once I noticed her outstanding 'ballon' and wanted to see her again.

Later the same year I saw her in London with Bolshoi Ballet. At first in "In the Upper Room" (choreography by Twyla Tharp) and I was thrilled by her great musicality and the ability to transfer this into dizzy making dance. Together with her 'élévation' and 'ballon' she was just dance & music at the same time. In "The Bright Stream", in which I saw her twice (London & Berlin), she was flying with wild 'grand jetés' across the stage like an arrow. About her "La Sylphide" and "Giselle", which I saw last year in NYC, renowned critics wrote hymns. For me additionally remarkable were her histrionic abilities, creating the roles.

In Paris the freshness and lightness of her dancing won me over immediately. The role of Clara does of course not make demands of her histrionic abilities in the way that "Giselle" does. But with the winning charm of youth and her radiant appearance, she found just the right touch for this role.

The first impression is that of a dancer who's every moment, every gesture comes from the music. The way she links her steps together makes the music visible. Even more, SHE IS music, music made visible through her dancing.

Her dance is filled with heart felt movement, extending into the most exquisite lines. The delicate line of her arms is breathtaking in its clear simplicity. She has 'élévation' as well as 'ballon' and seems at times to hover in the air, defying all laws of gravity. When she takes a balance she remains utterly still and centered. Her footwork is very fast, very clean, coming out of a high and flexible arch, which enables her to execute 'pas de bourrées' and 'pas courus' to great effect. As an interpreter she has the extraordinary ability to become that, which she is dancing. One could say that she is Clara in the same way that she portrayed Giselle with utmost believability.

Natasha was very consistent, being simply lovely in both performances. It is too bad that Mathias Heymann was not in top form. He was good as a partner, being secure and reliable. His jumps were sometimes lacking in lightness, even if he did not make mistakes per se. All in all they made a good couple, but Mathias was not as brilliant as Natasha. - At the second performance on the 9th of January, Natasha and Alessio Carbone worked very harmoniously together. She seemed to be a touch freer and more relaxed than on the previous evening. Let me give you an example in the way they executed 'grand jetés' together. Normally men seem to stay in the air longer than women. Not so with Natasha. She could really compete. With her superbly light take off, the highness of her jump, the two of them formed a glorious picture of harmony in every phase of the flight on equal height. This picture I will never forget. - It must be said that Alessio was a good partner and fine in his soli. He had tremendous footwork and beats (entrechats etc.) and powerfull jumps. - Natasha's solo in the final pas de deux was especially memorable for me, demonstrating all her strengths.

Nevertheless I have to tell you about a little incident that took place in the first second act pas de deux. During a somewhat complicated shoulder lift, Natasha shot past her mark and landed on her hands instead of remaining glamorously on Carbone's shoulder. Natasha covered beautifully and moved instantly into the next pose. Both continued firmly as though the incident had never happened. These things happen sometimes and Natasha reacted quite professional. Thus, this incident in my view was not determining for the overall wonderful impression of their both dancing.

A last word on an extraordinary conductor and orchestra. Orchestre Colonne played exquisitely under the leadership of Kevin Rhodes. The dynamic levels of piano and forte were carefully observed and full, rich sound of the orchestra was a delight for the ears. Tempi always were adequate. I believe Rhodes to be an excellent ballet conductor, always keeping an eye on the dancers and remaining aware of their needs.

What about the audience? The Parisians are said to be critical and somewhat reserved. Intermediate applause as usual, sometimes lukewarm, some encouraging cheers and bravos. However, their usual critical reserved dissolved by the end of the performance and the strong applause for the bows was honest, warm and long, joined by louder cheers and bravos; several curtain calls. And you can imagine, when 2700 spectators applaud enthusiastically and start shouting and cheering, believe me, they can make a deafening roar!

To sum up these wonderful evenings:
Natasha took the Bastille by storm.
Fortunately without any victims - only winners, mainly the audiences and a happy young Russian ballerina.