Due to the pandemic, graduates of the Bolshoi Ballet Academy are forced to finish their study on-line. We won’t have a chance to see their state exams and the traditional concert in the Bolshoi Theatre. All of them passed a long 8-year way towards their goals, but today they have to isolate themselves and wait. So we’ve decided it’s necessary to support the young dancers and tell about the best graduates of the Academy. From La Personne pages our heroes told us how to learn and train in the lockdown, how to keep the shape, not to lose heart and shared with us their dreams. Specially for the project we made on-line shootings with the dancer via Zoom and Clos App.

Meet Mark Orlov.


I have a lot of desires and dreams, since I am at the very beginning of my career. I don’t know much yet – lots of things I haven’t seen, haven’t read, haven’t known, haven’t tried and haven’t realized…


From the age of 5 I was engaged in gymnastics, and once my coach said that I had ballet abilities. I took these words lightly, since I did not know what ballet was.

Once my mother and I were visiting friends and met a family whose daughter studied at the Bolshoi Ballet Academy. It so happened that her parents noticed my ballet abilities and advised me to try to enter the Academy. I was just ten. Initially, I did not want to do ballet, as I thought that it was more for girls. But thanks to my beloved mother, who insisted on trying, we still went for admission to Moscow. I passed all the tours successfully and was admitted to the Academy.

From that moment I’ve learned what ballet is and I’ve begun to be interested in it.

In modern life, there is a very fast rhythm, everything changes quickly, we live in eternal haste, and there is absolutely no place left for real, high feelings, for something kind, bright and beautiful.

Now, being in the lockdown, I do not think about what I should be afraid of in my future profession, I more worry about how our life, the life of the Academy graduates, will develop in the future. When we take state exams, what theatres will we go to, when will the pandemic end? There are many questions…

There is such a proverb: “Nothing ventured, nothing gained.” Therefore, I am not afraid of anything, but I only dream of getting to work soon, since I am at the very beginning of my career.

Of course, I am very happy that I study in this great educational institute, that has given to the world a huge number of creative personalities in the art field: artists, choreographers, teachers. It is a big responsibility studying with teachers who were themselves wonderful artists.

It is my great happiness to be a successor of the great Moscow men’s school. And I dream to prove in future with my roles that I am a worthy graduate of the Bolshoi Ballet Academy.

I am very grateful to my mother, who chose this path for me, she did everything to interest me, to create all the conditions so that I did not need anything. She is my main support, and I am sure that it will always be so.

Despite the fact that no one in my family is connected with the world of ballet, thanks to my studies at the Academy, they became ballet fans.

I try not to lose heart and usefully spend the time in self-isolation. I’ve successfully closed the session, every day I do class, stretching and power training. I read books and watch movies. In my free time I help my mother with the house-keeping.

Sometimes, to develop my horizons, I watch master classes by famous artists, but I train with my teacher for classical dance online. Very often we repeat the lesson that was prepared for the state exam.

Despite the fact that there is a lot of free time, time flies so imperceptibly and with such speed that I have a full feeling that we’ve been just students and preparing for exams recently. Of course, I really want to return to the previous rhythm of life, meet friends, teachers, and people not online, but live, calmly walk the street and not worry about a protective mask or gloves.

I watched the live broadcasts of the Bolshoi Theatre artists, La Personne’s broadcast, where you talked with artists from different theatres and with students of the Academy, watched ballet broadcasts from different theatres. I think it is very cool that artists, the management of theatres and magazines do everything to keep in touch together with the audience, giving them the opportunity to enjoy this beautiful art even through the screen.

The situation did not fundamentally affect me. At first it has been unusual to live off-schedule, to do online, but now we are all used to it and everything has turned out not to be so scary.

About the future…

Man proposes, God disposes! Recently, I began to think positively more often. I think that in all situations you can always find positive sides. You have to be an optimist!

I have a lot of desires and dreams, since I am at the very beginning of my career. I don’t know much yet – lots of things I haven’t seen, haven’t read, haven’t known, haven’t tried and haven’t realized…

La Personne

The original independent ballet media in Russia

La Personne