Run time: 87mins
Director: Nick Read
Cast: Sergei Filin, Vladimir Urin, Boris Akimov, Maria Alexandrova, Dimitry Medvedev
Synopsis: The Bolshoi – symbol of Russia, a national treasure and one of the most famous institutions in the world. Recently, however, the theatre has been in the headlines for all the wrong reasons: intrigue, personal attacks and management changes have created lurid headlines. Now, for the first time, the theatre directors have allowed the backstage process to be documented.
A fascinating, no holds barred, behind the scenes look at the world famous, scandal-hit ballet company. On January 17, 2013, Russia’s greatest cultural institution was shaken to its core when a masked assailant threw acid into the face of Bolshoi Ballet Director Sergei Filin. In an extraordinary twist, former Bolshoi principal dancer Pavel Dmitrichenko was subsequently arrested and charged with orchestrating the attack. In the wake of these tumultuous events, a British film crew led by director Nick Read became the first ever to be granted full backstage access. This engrossing documentary lays bare the venerable theatre’s poisonous, febrile atmosphere of intrigue, jealousy and ruthless ambition. As Dmitrichenko goes on trial and Filin continues treatment in the hope of saving his sight, we get a privileged insight into the creation of some incredible artistic triumphs back at the Bolshoi.
An impressive documentary which gives an insight into the secretive world of what is Russia’s greatest cultural brand, it is a riveting look at a comeback which turned sour.
Images courtesy of Altitude Films