“My technique? It is just a means of expression“
According to her, the audience shouldn’t notice it, as “technique should not be distinguishable from the
character you portray“. The Mariinsky superstar opens up about her artistic vision, her busy life and the way
she is dealing with the pandemic. Here she explains us why she owes a lot to artistic gymnastics and she
rarely has time to unwind after a show.
Viktoria Tereshkina is today one of the brightest stars in the Russian ballet firmament. A Principal dancer with the Mariinsky Theatre since 2008, she has a unique way to embody different styles and she is one of the few Russian Principals today able to wholly adapt her physicality to match the needs of each choreography. Even when it comes to not looking Russian-trained.
Born in Krasnoyarsk, in Siberia, Viktoria was trained in artistic gymnastics from the age of four. She started studying ballet when she was ten, and she spent the last three years of her ballet training in St. Petersburg, graduating from the Vaganova Ballet Academy. I reach her in a tough moment, while many countries are dealing with a dramatic second wave of the coronavirus pandemic. Yet she doesn’t sound too worried, and she seems to think the worst is over.
How are you and your family in these tough months?
Thank God the worst months are now behind us, although I believe it may be true that it won’t be over until
we’ve all been ill – we need to build immunity. I am glad our theatre is now open; I think it won’t close again. There have to be performances, the audience needs to receive aesthetic pleasure from them. I guess you could say we have survived this period as well as anyone else. Perhaps better than some other people as I still have the opportunity to work.
Isn’t it difficult to keep fit now in St. Petersburg? Can you have classes or go to the gym?
During self-isolation I trained at home. Basically, it was kind of PE on a mat. I stretched my muscles, but I quickly understood it was not enough to keep in shape so to be back dancing right away after the lockdown. At the end of May we were allowed to be back to our theatre and to rehearse, and it took three weeks to gradually get back in shape – we had class, then we started working on pointe and even executing fouettés. It was very helpful… particularly when we were told that in five days there would be a gala concert, and that I was
scheduled to dance “Don Quixote” pas de deux, no less!