Featured Ballerina: Alessandra Ferri [Video]

Alessandra Ferri's feet on Sting music video.
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Alesandra Ferri warms up her feet for music video with Sting. Image excerpt from video.

Alessandra Ferri is one of my favorite ballerinas. Not only because she has the most incredibly beautiful ballet feet, but because of her powerful stage presence and dramatic interpretation, as you’ll witness in the music video below where she appears with Sting: as he plays, she dances with absolute technical control and spiritual abandon.

How did Alessandra Ferri get started?

Alessandra Ferri was born in Milan, Italy in 1963. She studied at Teatro alla Scala, Milan, until the age of 15, and then attended the Royal Ballet School. She won one of the three Prix de Lausanne for 1980, which enabled her to continue her studies at the Royal Ballet School on scholarship before joining The Royal Ballet later that year.

Source from BallerinaGallery.com.

Royal Ballet

She danced with the Royal Ballet (1980–1984), American Ballet Theatre (1985–2007) and La Scala Theatre Ballet (1992–2007) and as an international guest artist, before retiring on August 10, 2007, aged 44.

Ferri joined the Royal Ballet in 1980 and in 1982, for her first major role in the ballet Mayerling, she was nominated for the Laurence Olivier Award for Outstanding First Achievement of the Year in Ballet. In 1983, she was nominated for and won the Laurence Olivier Award for Outstanding Individual Performance of the Year in a New Dance Production for her role in Sir Kenneth MacMillan’s Valley of Shadows. In 1984, she was promoted to the rank of Principal Dancer.

American Ballet Theatre

In 1985, Ferri left the Royal Ballet at the request of Mikhail Baryshnikov to become a Principal Dancer with American Ballet Theatre, under Baryshnikov’s own direction.[4] She stated that she needed a more rigorous training program that the company could provide.[3] In 2007 she brought Roberto Bolle to dance opposite her in her farewell performance of Romeo and Juliet.[4]

La Scala Theatre Ballet

In 1992, Ferri became a Guest Star of American Ballet Theatre and began a very close collaboration with La Scala Theatre Ballet, becoming recognized as Prima Ballerina Assoluta of the company.

Follow this wikipedia link to learn more on her guest appearances, created roles, awards, honors and more!

As promised: Alessandra Ferri and Sting Music Video. In this dance short you’ll see what I mean about her exceptional feet. Enjoy!

Music video with Alessandra Ferri and Sting from YouTube.

I highly recommend you watch Ferri dance the role of Juliet in MacMillan’s Romeo and Juliet with Wayne Eagling in this dramatic scene.

In 2010 ballerina Alessandra Ferri is shown in her  farewell curtain call after dancing Romeo and Juliet with Roberto Bolle. Julio Bocca, her dancing partner of 20 years carries her off stage. Her two adorable daughters, Mathilde and Emma, also appear on stage with her. (Only 19 seconds long.)

Video from YouTube.com.

I hope you enjoyed watching these two videos with this amazing ballerina, Alessandra Ferri. Don’t forget to jump over to this link to see her in Romeo and Juliet!

Help a young ballerina or ballet student be inspired by “Sharing” this post by clicking the share button below. Until next time!


  1. Lovely, she makes it look so effortless, though I know it’s not.

    • Amanda,
      I know that’s precisely what all ballerinas strive for: to make their art (dancing) look effortless.
      The quote below written by dancer and choreographer Enrico Ceccetti:

      “Aim at softness and ease in your performance of a dance.
      Endeavor that all shall be harmonious.
      However hard you work at your lessons or at rehearsals,
      let none of this effort be visible in your performance.
      There must be no sign of concentration, exertion, or tension.
      All must be free and natural.
      For the true art is that which conceals the labor that produced it.”
      Thanks for your visit and comments!

  2. Those have got to be the most flexible feet I’ve ever seen. And look at Sting showing off his yoga moves 😉 Gorgeous video!

    • Lulu,

      I SO agree with you. I love how Sting has matured over his career. I can watch this video over and over!

      Thanks for stopping by,


  3. Amazing! And I thought we were going to see Sting doing some ballet : )

  4. I had no idea that Sting did this. It was very beautifully done. Her feet were intriguing.

  5. I always seem to get caught up watching your videos –
    Love your post’s.

  6. My daughters Ballet School is having her write a paper on Alessandra Ferri and one of the the things it must include is “Name a ballet or Variation they became notable for performing”…Ferris resume is so long with many notable performances. I’m curious as to what immediately come to mind when you read that question. Any help or insight would be appreciated.

    • Absolutely Jennifer, with pleasure.

      One of my favorite videos of Ferri is precisely this one. Here she is more mature dancer (woman as well). I believe she was already a mother when she shot this video, so brings so much to her interpretation.

      However, if you asked me what classical ballet do I like her most in, I would have to say her Juliet. She is SO passionate. It’s an incredibly difficult role to play, not just technically, (the bedroom scene shown in the video below is a highly technical pas de deux), but the acting as well, and she nails it. Here’s an excerpt:

      It’s the second video.

      And my second favorite role of hers would be in Giselle. She is absolutely perfect as the innocent young girl in love:


      Here’s Alessandra in the mad scene too:


      Jennifer, I hope this helps your daughter learn more about Alessandra Ferri and that she enjoys writing about her!

      Let me know how it goes,


  7. Ferri’s Best Pas De Deux And Sting’s Best Duet

    Dance really is a natural accompaniment to music. That’s why this sort of piece makes all the sense there is….

    Funny, but it actually looks like Sting is getting ready to dance with her-Pas de Deux style. Like she did all those times with her male equivalent, the strapping Prima Ballerino Robert Bolle.

    Ferri and Sting-The two really are, oddly the perfect companion piece to one another. One can see why the Italian rose was named Prima Ballerina Assoluta. Baryshnikov himself asked her to defect from the Royal Ballet in London to the ABT. That’s why Misha was made head of ABT–he really did know what he was doing up there.

    After seeing this, I almost believe Sting himself could partner her onstage. I can’t help but wonder if she had chemistry this good with Nureyev, Baryshnikov, Dowell and Julio Bocca. He was said to be her absolute favorite. Julio was said to be a lot of people’s favorite-perhaps the greatest dancer of any and all kind ever to come of Argentina. Little Julio is one of the best things to come out of the entire country-right up there with the wine, the coffee, the soccer, the music, the pato… and the tango.

    I’d like to see these two do something together again. This was a sort of magic, wasn’t it? These two were two of the best in the world… just for one moment.

    -For The Both of Them and What They Do, Dane Youssef

    • Dane,

      I agree with you in that for a moment together Ferri and Sting gave us an amazing duet!

      Thanks so much for stopping by and sharing your comments with me and all the readers!

      I enjoyed reading your insights,



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