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Osipova as Isadora

Posted on July 18, 2018

Natalia Osipova as Isadora photo Sergei Misenko

Ballerina Natalia Osipova will star in a new evening-length production Isadora, the Segerstrom Center for the Arts has announced. The new production, will also feature Veronika Part, with choreography by Vladimir Varnava.

Osipova will play the modern dance pioneer, whose dances, in bare feet and flowing “Greek” style draperies, made her famous across the world. Isadora was an important influence on Serge Diaghilev’s Ballets Russes, and she established dance schools in several countries, including Russia after the 1917 Revolution. Her dancing deeply impressed Frederick Ashton, who created Five Brahms Waltzes in the Manner of Isadora Duncan in tribute. She was also the subject of ballets by Kenneth MacMillan and Maurice Béjart. “I have long wanted to bring her fascinating story and incredible artistry to the stage,” Osipova said. “I am so excited to create a new ballet honouring her incredible life.”

The evening length work uses music from Prokofiev’s Cinderella, played by the Mikhailovsky Orchestra. Varnava, who will direct and choreograph the production, has created works for the Maryinsky Theatre, and for Osipova’s own contemporary programme, Solo for Two. The ballet will be performed by an international cast of 25 dancers, with Part appearing in the featured role of The Ballerina. Isadora will be performed at the California arts centre from August 10 to 12, 2018. Visit for more information.

Photograph: Natalia Osipova as Isadora Duncan. Photographed by Sergei Misenko.


Zoë was born in Edinburgh, and saw her first dance performances at the Festival there. She is the dance critic of The Independent, and has also written for The Independent on Sunday, The Scotsman and Dancing Times. In 2002, she received her doctorate from the University of York for a thesis on “Nationhood and epic romance: Ariosto, Sidney, Spenser”. She is the author of The Royal Ballet: 75 Years and The Ballet Lover’s Companion.

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