According to a report in the New York Times, Moscow's Bolshoi Theatre announced on its website today that it would not be renewing the contract of the ballet’s artistic director, Sergei Filin. Filin, whose contract is up in March 2016, made world headlines in 2013 when he had acid thrown in his face, an assault organized by Bolshoi soloist Pavel Dmitrichenko. Filin has since had multiple eye surgeries and is now partially blind.
Scandal and rivalry are nothing new for the Bolshoi Theatre. Crushed glass being placed in pointe shoes, needles being left in costumes, and even a dead cat being thrown onstage instead of flowers are just a few of the whispered rumors that have plagued the theatre for centuries.
But with the January acid attack on Bolshoi Ballet artistic director Sergei Filin, these backstage dramas were brought to the world stage. And the Russian government is not happy.
American Ballet Theatre principal David Hallberg is back in Moscow again. Although he has danced as a principal with the Bolshoi Ballet since 2011, this is the first time he's been in Russia since the devastating acid attack on the company's artistic director Sergei Filin in January.
After weeks of questions, it looks like there are finally some answers as to who was behind the acid attack on Bolshoi Ballet artistic director Sergei Filin. Last night, Russian police obtained confessions from three men, including Bolshoi dancer Pavel Dmitrichenko. It turns out that Dmitrichenko hired the other two to accost Filin as the director was getting into his car on January 17. On Russian state television yesterday, Dmitrichenko said he did not intend for the attack to go as far as it did.
Ballet politics turned ugly yesterday: Bolshoi Ballet artistic director Sergei Filin was attacked outside his home last night. A masked man threw a bottle of acid at his face. It's been reported that Filin's eyesight might be compromised and he will need extensive plastic surgery for his face. After a 15-hour operation in Moscow, Filin was flown to Brussels, Belgium this morning for special burns treatment. Doctors say his recovery may take up to six months.