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Polunin and Zelensky leave Midnight Express

Posted on April 10, 2013

sergei opener

sergei openerSergei Polunin, whose shock resignation from The Royal Ballet made headlines last year, has pulled out of the Peter Schaufuss Ballet’s production of Midnight Express, which opens at the London Coliseum tonight. Igor Zelensky, former star of the Maryinsky Ballet and now director of Moscow’s Stanislavsky Ballet, where Polunin is now based, has also withdrawn from the production and returned to Russa.


Peter Schaufuss told The Independent that Polunin had not turned up to rehearsals last Wednesday.


Performances of Midnight Express will go ahead. Johan Christensen of the Peter Schaufuss Ballet will replace Polunin as Billy Hayes, with Johan King Silverhult replacing Zelensky as the Jailor. Wayne Eagling, the third guest star announced for the production, will still be dancing.


Midnight Express is at the London Coliseum until April 14.


Picture: Sergei Polunin. Photograph: Eric Richmond

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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