Ukrainians to protest National Ballet ahead of ex-Bolshoi dancer’s debut
Russian star dancer Olga Smirnova will make her debut with the Dutch National Ballet on Saturday after fleeing to the Netherlands about a month ago. A pro-Ukrainian demonstration is planned outside the Stopera in Amsterdam before the start of the performance.
Smirnova was a dancer in the world-famous Moscow Bolshoi Ballet. After Russia invaded Ukraine, she said she was "against the war with all her heart" and was ashamed of Russia.
This made it impossible for her to work in Russia, so Smirnova moved to the Netherlands and joined the Dutch National Ballet. She was given the titular role in Marius Petipa's Raymonda ballet. She will dance in the role on Saturday as well as next Wednesday.
Smirnova's performance begins at 8 p.m. An hour before, a pro-Ukrainian demonstration outside the building complex housing the Dutch National Ballet will call on more Russian artists to speak out against the war and not remain neutral.
Reporting by ANP and NL Times