This weekend the ballet world lost a legend. Maya Plisetskaya, a star of the Bolshoi Ballet who danced ambitiously into her 60s, died of a heart attack at age 89 on Saturday. Dancer, choreographer, teacher and director, Plisetskaya was known for her tumultuous history with the Soviets and beloved for her artistry, power and fluidity of movement.
Following a legacy of Bolshoi-affiliated family members, Plisetskaya began her Bolshoi training at age 8 and stayed loyal to the company for the duration of her career. Though she has many other credentials - such as her stint as the director of the Spanish National Ballet and her time dancing for Maurice Béjart - she will largely be remembered as a longtime face of the Bolshoi.
Check out our #ThrowbackThursday post from a few years ago featuring Plisetskaya performing The Dying Swan in 1986 (at age 61!) and the below video of her performing in Don Quixote in 1959!