Polunin and Osipova dancing at La Scala. Photo by Marco Brescia and Rudy Amisano

Sergei Polunin and Natalia Osipova: Ballet's New "It" Couple

What's more exciting than two of ballet's biggest superstars dancing together in a new contemporary program at Sadler's Wells? How about finding out they're a couple in real life, too?


Well, it's official. This week, Royal Ballet principal Natalia Osipova and Stanislavsky dancer Sergei Polunin (who also made waves dancing in a viral video to Hozier's "Take Me to Church" earlier this year) confirmed the rumors that have been flying around for months when they announced that they are, in fact, in a relationship. They're also longing to dance together more often, and claim that classical companies are resistant to letting them be partners onstage. The two performed together in Giselle at La Scala earlier this year, but haven't been able to do so again since.

That's about to change. This week, they announced the new contemporary program, opening at Sadler's Wells in June and featuring work by Arthur Pita, Sidi Larbi Cherkaoui and Russell Maliphant. Osipova and Polunin will star in Hotel Flamingo, a work by Pita based on A Streetcar Named Desire, with Osipova playing Blanche and Polunin as Stanley. This isn't Osipova's first time working with Pita and Cherkaoui: last year's Solo for Two program, which she performed with her ex-fiancé Ivan Vasiliev, also featured their choreography.

From Polunin's abrupt departure from the Royal two years ago to Osipova's much-talked-about split from Vasiliev, neither of these two is a stranger to the spotlight—and both seem to have a rebellious streak. Now that they've joined forces both onstage and off, we can't wait to see what they'll do next.

Latest Posts


Getty Images

Class of 2020, These Ballet Stars Have a Heartfelt Video Message Just for You

Congratulations to this year's graduating seniors!

You might not have had the chance to take that long planned-for final bow, but we're here to cheer you on and celebrate all that you've accomplished. And we've brought together stars from across the ballet world to help us; check out the video to hear their best wishes for your futures.

To further fête all of the ballet grads out there, we're also giving away 100 free subscriptions to Pointe... plus, one lucky bunhead will receive a personalized message from one of ballet's biggest stars. Click here to enter!


Courtesy Boylston

Is the #EsmeraldaChallenge Quarantine's Next Big Thing?

By this point in the coronavirus pandemic shutdown, people are completely burned out on dancing at home. So it's no surprise that last week, all-around dance superstar Alex Wong posted a video on Instagram performing the famous La Esmeralda variation... but in his living room. And with a frying pan instead of a tambourine.

Keep reading SHOW LESS
Tulsa Ballet in Ma Cong's Tchaikovsky: The Man Behind the Music. Kate Luber Photography, Courtesy Tulsa Ballet.

Updated: Mark Your Calendars for These Online Ballet Performances

Updated on 5/27/2020

Since COVID-19 has forced ballet companies around the world to cancel performances—and even the remainder of their seasons—many are keeping their audiences engaged by streaming or posting pre-recorded performances onto their websites or social media channels. To help keep you inspired during these challenging times, we've put together a list of upcoming streaming events and digital performances.

Keep reading SHOW LESS

Editors' Picks