TEACHER AND PUPIL.
ALEXEI ERMOLAEV – VLADIMIR VASILEV.
Throughout a ballet artist’s entire creative life, they remain a pupil. Much of the artist’s fate depends on their teacher. Vladimir Vasilev, by his own admission, was incredibly lucky when, in 1962, he became the first pupil of the legendary dancer, Alexei Nikolaevich Ermolaev. The first part prepared by Ermolaev and Vasilev – Basil in the ballet Don Quixote - created a furor, and was a real revolution in the ballet world. Nowadays this reworking is considered a classic and is erroneously accredited to the choreographers Marius Petipa and Alexander Gorsky. Thanks to Leonid Zhdanov’s wonderful photographs, the real course of events can be restored and we are able take a glimpse into the inner sanctum of the theatre – the rehearsal rooms, which are strictly off limits to the public.