The world famous Russian Bolshoi Ballet features some of the finest dancers in the world. Most of them are beautiful young women with bodies toned to perfection.
A former member of the company has made an upsetting accusation. Anastasia Volochkova accused the theatre’s general director of turning the company “into a giant brothel”.
General director Anatoly Iksanov dismissed the claims as “ravings”.
Volochkova made the accusations on a Russian television talk show Sunday, and later on radio.
“It mainly happened with the corps du ballet but also with the soloists,” she said.
“Ten years ago, when I was dancing at the theatre, I repeatedly received such propositions to share the beds of oligarchs.
“The girls were forced to go along to grand dinners and given advance warning that afterwards they would be expected to go to bed and have sex,” she alleged.
“When the girls asked: ‘What happens if we refuse?’, they were told that they would not go on tour or even perform at the Bolshoi theatre. Can you imagine?”
The allegations were put to Iksanov during a news conference at the theatre on Tuesday, to which he responded: “I don’t comment on dirt and ravings.”
Volochkova resigned from her position as a popular talk show host, she says she is resigning from the Kremlin’s ruling party as well.
“When I joined the party, I never thought I would have this feeling: it’s like I was a member of a gang and if I take a step back, there will be revenge,” she told the AFP news agency.
The ballerina-turned-celebrity said that the decision to cancel the popular talk-shows on state-owned Channel One was probably down to her public spat with United Russia and had reached a “very high political level”.
“I never thought that people on such a level would start taking revenge on me; it’s a battle of unequal forces,” she said.
“I’m just a ballerina.”
Volochkova was fired from the Bolshoi in 2003 for being “too tall and too heavy”. She appealed to the Russian court and won, but her career never re-materialized.
She has been a frequent guest on Russian television, and has dabbled in opposition politics. Russian tabloids frequently feature Volochkova’s actions.
Columnist-The Guardian Express