As war in ukraine Amidst the fury, dancers from the country’s most acclaimed ballet company are trying to rise to the occasion with their artistry.
Armed with pirouettes, plies and jutees, dancers like prima ballerina Olga Kifak von Kramer use their skills to showcase Ukrainian culture. Ballet has long been one of Moscow’s most revered cultural exports, but many of its best dancers are from or trained in Ukraine.
“We dance in spite of Russia,” said Kifak von Kramer, whose brother was killed fighting Russia. “It’s very difficult. But we are Ukrainians. we are not broken.”
As theaters were closed, especially during the first few months of the war, some dancers went to the front. Principal of the Ukrainian National Ballet His dancer, Oleksander Shapoval, was a once-in-a-generation dancer in which over the course of 28 seasons he played 30 different roles. In September 2022, he was killed in a Russian mortar attack.
A father of two, he was remembered as a “brave romantic”, mentor and friend.
“I think it was probably very difficult for the whole company,” said Mikita Skolkov, who will replace Shapoval as the company’s principal dancer.
Skolkov is currently dancing the lead role in the romantic comedy “Don Quixote” that will make Kiev audiences laugh. Paige Bienne, an American volunteer, joined the performance and said it emphasized the resilience of the Ukrainian people.
“A lot of people who went home … asked me if Kiev was destroyed and I said ‘absolutely not.’ It’s really nice to see them live on instead of doing.”
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https://www.cbsnews.com/news/ukrainian-dancers-celebrate-countrys-culture-and-resilience-even-in-the-face-of-war/ Ukrainian dancers celebrate national culture and resilience in the face of war