David Hallberg, an American in Moscow
The dance world got a bit of buzz a few weeks ago with the news that the Bolshoi Ballet had signed on American David Hallberg as a premier -- the historic company's term for principal dancer.
The Bolshoi, which was founded the same year the United States was born, turned to American Ballet Theatre's Hallberg, 29, to be its first U.S. company member.
Hallberg has been in Russia this month to acclimate, rehearse and perform in the showcase "Kings of the Dance" (which will make its way to Orange County next week).
His debut on the Bolshoi's mainstage will come in November, opening the company's season in a new production of “The Sleeping Beauty."
"When I saw David for the first time on stage, I was simply shattered as I saw a real prince, ideal for our classical productions,” Anatoly Iksanov, general director of the Bolshoi Theatre, told The Times' Sergei L. Loiko.
“There and then I told myself: ‘This artist must dance at the Bolshoi!’”
As for Hallberg himself? “It is a lot to swallow, the pressure is very high, the responsibility is huge,” he told Loiko.
-- Sherry Stern
Photo: David Hallberg in "Kings of the Dance" in Moscow. Credit: Sergei L. Loiko/Los Angeles Times