Today, June 28, is the birthday of Vaganova Ballet Academy teacher, Irina Sitnikova.
Here are some excerpts from my interviews with Vaganova Ballet Academy students, where they speak about Ms Sitnikova.
There were some truly great pedagogues at Vaganova, but I think my favourite two would be Nikolai Tsiskaridze and Irina Sitnikova. Both of them shared quite a similar ethos, and sometimes Tsiskaridze would hand us over to her when he was absent. She would treat us like we were her own students. Her signature was to make us do grand battements with every combination at the barre. The thing that makes such a difference with them is the work ethic they inspire – when they can just keep on going no matter how late it is or how tired they must be. You simply have to do the same. – Oscar Frame
[My favourite teacher at the academy was] my classical teacher, Irina Sitnikova. She was very strict and tough. Outside of the class, however, she was the most caring and lovely person. She is very helpful and likes to care for her students. She also used to invite us to her dacha, and we had a lot of fun with her. – Laura Fernandez-Gromova