Olga Kifyak, the prima ballerina who plays the title role in the Russian Grand Ballet’s upcoming performance of Tchaikovsky’s The Sleeping Beauty is talented, but not what most would consider a veteran of the stage.
“I started dancing very late,” she says. In fact, she only began to study dancing formally when she entered college in 1998, and joined a professional dance troupe upon graduation. Even so, she has been named Honored Artist of Ukraine and has danced internationally in many other classical roles, including Odette and Odile of Swan Lake.
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Kifyak, who is originally from Kiev, Ukraine, is happy to be part of a global production that allows her to perform for a variety of audiences. “It’s amazing,” she says, “We have danced in Australia, China, Europe…and of course, America. I love getting to see it all.”
However, she also acknowledges the difficulties of playing the cursed princess of a classic fairy tale. “The characters are already familiar to the audience through the original story,” she says. “It’s a big undertaking. I can only hope that they will enjoy my little Aurora.”
The ballet troupe is in America for a reprise of a previous tour in 2015, and will be traveling the full breadth of the country while alternating between performances of The Sleeping Beauty and Swan Lake.
The performance will take place Friday, October 7 at 7:30 p.m. at the Stafford Centre, 10505 Cash. For information, call 281-208-6900 or visit russiangrandballet.com. $35 to $68.