Maria Kochetkova & Jorma Elo rehearse for “Reflections” 1


Opening on 20 January 2010 at the Orange County Performing Arts Center, er … update, the Segerstrom Center for the Arts, is the co-production with the Bolshoi Ballet, “Reflections.”

Preparing a feature story for the Los Angeles Times, I had the opportunity to chat with San Francisco Ballet principal dancer Maria Kochetkova (her astoundingly beautiful arabesque captured above; below, she poses second from left), the sole cast member to live and work in the U.S. Kochetkova describes leaving Russia, and the challenging solo the Finnish-born choreographer Elo is preparing for her.

“I won the Prix de Lausanne [2002], and I got to choose any ballet. I chose the Royal Ballet, I worked five years, when I experienced everything I wanted. Then I saw a San Francisco Ballet performance in London. I thought, ‘If I ever decide to change, I will go to this company.'”

“I was inspired by everything I saw. But I knew nothing about San Francisco.”

“Probably there are three choreographers whose work I especially like: Christopher Wheeldon, he helped me so much to learn how to create movement. Yuri Possokhov, I feel like we have the same response to the music, and Jorma Elo, he was the first to make me move in a completely differently way.”

“For girls to do a solo five minutes long it’s very hard, it’s easier for a man. Sugar Plum is long but it’s not that demanding.”

“His [Elo’s] choreography is very demanding and hard. It’s definitely going to be a challenge. Everything is in contrast, when the music is loud , he makes me do nothing. He uses a lot of break dancing movement, incorporated with ballet [steps].”

Like this? Read more on “Reflections”


photo credit: ardani artists management, segerstrom center for the arts

One comment on “Maria Kochetkova & Jorma Elo rehearse for “Reflections”

  1. Teri McCollum Jan 17,2011 9:33 am

    Yuri Possokhov shares the same Bolshoi training as Maria and is also a Former San Francisco Ballet Principal Dancer, now SFB ‘Choreographer in Residence’, something SFB has not previously had. He has chosen Maria to dance in his ‘Diving into the Lilacs’ and ‘Classical Symphony’, both hits at SFB in the last 3 yrs. ‘Classical Symphony’ will be featured again in SFB’s upcoming 2011 season.

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