Sophomore spent summer studying at one of country’s most prestigious ballet’s school


courtesy of Peter Linder

Linder was able to compete and learn from his peers at the Kirov Academy.

In search of an intense training and a further knowledge on different ballet styles, sophomore Peter Linder participated in the Kirov Academy of Ballet in Washington D.C. for six weeks this summer break.

Based off of the famous Kirov Theatre in St. Petersburg, Russia, the Kirov Academy of Ballet offers a rare opportunity to young dancers from many states and various countries, providing instructions from professionals, developing ballet skills, and touring the historic city. “It sounded fun to be able to travel to our nation’s capital and spend time in America’s most known ballet academy,” said Linder.

While residing at Kirov Academy of Ballet, Linder not only benefitted from famous experts such as David Makhateli, a Georgian ballet and a graduate of Vaganova Ballet Academy, but had a chance to gain a deeper understanding about various ballet genres. “The school also taught “character,” which is another form of ballet [that] includes more folk dances from all over Europe. We learned [about] the German contemporary ballet every other day, and we also had [a] Pilates class [that] was beneficial to our core muscles,” said Linder.

Throughout the rigorous, six-week ballet camp Linder also faced several challenges. Required to practice for four hours every day, he went through all kinds of ballet exercise ranging from “grand pliés,” a movement involving bending of the knees, to “grand jetés,” a long horizontal jump. “I was learning new jumps that were completely new to me. In the final performance, I had to dance Albrecht’s final variation from ‘Giselle’,” said Linder.

Having already performed the leading role in last year’s “The Nutcracker,” Linder sees his summer experience as a good step forward in his ballet career and looks forward to attend another ballet camp next year. “Right now I am attending a ballet class [at] the Academy of Russian Ballet, and I have auditioned for [another] nutcracker at the end of this year,” said Linder.