A behind-the-scenes look at Russian ballet

Darian Volkova
Ballet dancer and photographer Darian Volkova reveals trade secrets

Russian ballet is famous for its beauty, plasticity, elegance and centuries-long history. This new photo series made by Darian Volkova lets viewers look behind the curtain with a very special guide...
 The author of these photos, Darian Volkova, is a photographer who specializes in capturing ballet dancers.
Darian is a ballet dancer too, and during breaks in rehearsals and shows she takes photos of colleagues, before returning to the stage.
The ballet world is mysterious — full of secrets and impenetrable. Darian’s photos mediate between dancers and spectators.
In her photos ballet dancers are delicate nymphs and graceful swans soaring above the stage. But a closer look reveals that every movement requires untold effort.
Ballet dancers’ days are full of rehearsals, trainings and injuries, all of which is hidden from the ordinary viewer.
These photos tell about the pain, sweat and emotion the dancers bring to the stage, along with inspiration and innate beauty.
These photos are called Soul in the Feet, they depict people who live and breathe ballet, laying bare their souls. Darian brings into focus the importance not only of dancing, but of living a story and bringing feelings to it.
Ballet dancer Tamara Shelyakova.
Anastasia Lukina dancing.
Darian takes photos of theaters in Russia and abroad, including the famous Mariinsky Theatre in St. Petersburg and the Vaganova Academy of Russian Ballet.
Swans rehearsing.
Margarita Kamish dancing.
Ballet dancer during the rehearsal, Theater in Vienna, Austria.
Behind the curtain, Mariinsky Theater in St. Petersburg.

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