Why Did Sergei Polunin Quit?

Why did Sergei Polunin quit the Royal Ballet?

Sergei Polunin does the proverbial splits. Why he quit is still a mystery. Image: Video excerpt.

Sergei Polunin did the proverbial “splits” when he unexpectedly exited the Royal Ballet last month.

Why did Sergei Polunin quit?

This is not the first time a ballet dancer with a promising future leaves a ballet company. Recently Ivan Vasilev and Natalia Osipova left the Bolshoi Ballet for for St Petersburg’s Mikhailovsky theatre.

Back in January 27 we reported Sergei’s abrupt departure from the Royal Ballet. But Sergei did not go to another company. So he’s left us wondering: Why?

It’s still a mystery as to the reasons for his sudden departure.

Why did Sergei Polunin quit?

Zoe Williams with The Guardian speculates.

Sergei Polunin was a young Ukrainian dancer of striking talent. He is 21, and was billed as the next Nureyev. And he resigned: the ballet world is stumped, since as the youngest ever principal at the Royal Ballet, he had already achieved more than wonderful dancers, throughout history, could ever dream of.

And the reasons … well, they were split between the completely daft and the terribly poignant. On his Twitter feed, he said things like “as long as you have a beer in your hand by morning” and “does any body sell heroin??”; but in an interview, he said: “I would have liked to behave badly … But all my family were working for me to succeed. My mother had moved to Kiev to be with me. There was no chance of me failing.”

He’d been in England since he was 13, his story a classic tale of the individual subjugated to the will of art and expectation.

Read the complete The Guardian’s article.

The life of a A-list dancer, like Polunin, takes an enormous amount of discipline and sacrifice, you have to love what you do so much that your passion outweighs the cost. Many believe Polunin was bored with his career. That may be one of his reasons.

The Daily Mail also reported:

Ukrainian Sergei Polunin, still only 21, rose rapidly through ranks within two years of joining the Royal Ballet from the Royal Ballet School and was promoted to top rank in 2010 aged only 19.

The sudden departure of the man labeled ‘Covent Garden’s most remarkable male discovery for years’ has shocked observers.

‘This is a total bolt out of the blue. Sergei was rehearsing right up until today. We are upset, but more than anything we are shocked.

‘He has never suggested that he was unhappy.

‘He just said he didn’t want to dance here any more.’

Polunin had given no indication in rehearsals that anything was amiss.

This week the dancer wrote on his Twitter page: ‘Just have to go through one night!!! then will make my next moves.’

In recent interviews the young star has indicated that he wants to do more dancing around the world and has been feeling constricted by his London timetable.

He has said that world galas are where the money is – and has also revealed that he is both tattooed and the co-owner of a tattoo parlour.

Was he unhappy? Was he bored? Was he looking for more money and artistic freedom? Why did Sergei Polunin quit? We might have to wait longer for an answer.

What do you think? Do you know of other dancers who have taken such steps? I know of at least one. Some have just burned out.

Share your thoughts below about this young ballet star’s abrupt decision. Do you think he should have stayed? Give us your opinion below. Thank you and have a restful evening!

About Romy Macias, Senior Editor

Romy danced with the Ballet Clasico de Queretaro Fernando Jhones for 10 years having reached 1st soloist position. She presently takes on character roles and teaches at the company's junior academy. This site is a testament to her passion for classical ballet. You're invited to be part of our community and join in the joy for this amazing art form.

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