Russian Season: What do Americans get out of training at Bolshoi Ballet Academy?

Dance Magazine: In the last few years, more young Americans have enrolled at the Bolshoi Ballet Academy (also known as the Moscow State Academy of Choreography) than ever before. Since 2007, the Russian American Foundation’s U.S. summer intensives and government-funded scholarship program have helped pave the road from America to Moscow as BBA has become increasingly open to foreign students. Now, Bolshoi-trained Americans still in their 20s are making their marks with top international companies, bringing with them a distinct blend of Russian training and American spirit. read more

For Russia, image is not a priority – России не до имиджа

РБК-ТВ: Russian American Foundation was mentioned in a Russian program entitled “Obzrevateli”/”Обозреватель” as one of the successful organizations who promote much needed cultural dialogue between the US and Russia. watch

A twirl with pain: Ballet dancer fights through scoliosis

McKinney Courier-Gazette: This summer, Colby Saltz will grace Bolshoi Ballet Academy, one of the nation’s premier summer intensive programs. A few months ago, she didn’t know if she’d dance again. read more

International Education Week RAF Scholarship Competition Winners

This year, RAF organized a scholastic competition in support of International Education Week (IEW) 2014 in late November.  A joint initiative between the U.S. Department of State and U.S. Department of Education, IEW is meant to celebrate the worldwide exchange of culture and ideas. RAF challenged all BBASI participants to create an informative and engaging presentation for their community describing the impact exposure to another culture has had on their lives.  RAF awarded eight $250 scholarships to BBASI alumni for outstanding presentations that best exemplify how BBASI experience has help them to become not just a student of ballet, but a student of the world. The winners are:

Participants (9-14 yrs)               Participants (15 yrs +)                    Participants (NSLI-Y)
Claire Morrison, 11yrs, NC        Bailey Garcia, 16yrs, CA               Erika Pugh, 18yrs, PA
Elsa Hritz, 12yrs, WA                 Alanna Muldowney, 16 yrs, FL      McCall Sheetz, 17yrs, CA
Isabella Janssen, 13yrs, SC
Ruth Schultz, 11yrs, NY

Congratulations to all participants and winners !  We welcome you to explore some of the featured presentations below:

Link to Erika Pugh’s presentation

Link to Claire Morrison’s presentation

Success in Seattle for Kelowna dancers

Kelownacapnews.com: Angel-Fox, who just turned 15, danced what Sarafanov described as, “the best performance of her life,” at the event and was selected to attend the prestigious Moscow’s Bolshoi Ballet Academy by the Russian American Foundation in New York, with the opportunity to go to the Bolshoi in Russia as well. read more

Dancer Experiences Russia

NorthNeighborNews.com: This past summer, Caroline auditioned for and was once again chosen as one of approximately 100 dancers from around the world to attend the Bolshoi Ballet’s summer intensive program in New York City. In addition, 15 dancers from around the United States were then chosen to go to Moscow to the Bolshoi Ballet Academy on full scholarship for an additional six weeks of study. read more

BBASI and NSLI-Y Alumna featured in CNN Photos 2014: The Year in Pictures

CNN Photos: Precious Adams is an alumna of  RAF’s Bolshoi Ballet Academy Summer Intensive Program (2010 and 2011) and the  NSLI-Y Russian Language and Culture RAF & Bolshoi Way Program (2011), funded by the U.S. Department of State, Bureau of Educational and Cultural Affairs.  As a result of her immersion in Bolshoi Ballet Academy’s training during RAF’s programs, Precious was invited to study year-round at the Bolshoi Ballet Academy in Moscow.  RAF is thrilled and honored to see one of our past students featured in the CNN Photos 2014: Year in Pictures. view photo (photo #9/February 1)

Letters From Moscow: San Angelo Ballerina Relays Stories from Bolshoi

San Angelo LIVE!: “Slovar, slovar,” writes Emma Armstrong in a blog post dated Nov. 26. Translated, she describes, the Russian word means “dictionary”, a one-syllable utterance she and her classmates have become all too familiar with in their courses at the Bolshoi Ballet Academy in Moscow, Russia over the past five weeks. read more

One of Your Local High School Students, Safia Speer, Received an NSLI-Y Program Scholarship to Study at the Bolshoi Ballet Academy in Moscow

Mountain Lake Living: The New York-based Russian American Foundation (RAF) is pleased to announce that Safia Speer has successfully completed the prestigious NSLI FOR YOUTH Program – funded by the U.S. Department of State,Bureau of Educational and Cultural Affairs – to spend six weeks of the summer 2014 studying Russian language, culture and ballet at the world renowned Bolshoi Ballet Academy in Moscow. read more 

Summer in Russia Prepares Teen for ‘Nutcracker’ Role

OVER THE MOUNTAIN JOURNAL: Elizabeth Lindsey, 16, a homeschooled student who lives in Mountain Brook, will perform as the Sugar Plum Fairy in next month’s production of “The Nutcracker” by the Birmingham Ballet. And the teen ballerina said it will take all of the lessons she learned at the Bolshoi Ballet Academy in Moscow to perfect the technically and physically demanding role. read more

RAF Celebrates International Education Week with Scholarship Opportunity

RAFIEWLOGOsmallRAF is excited to announce its support of International Education Week (IEW).  A joint initiative between the U.S. Department of State and U.S. Department of Education, IEW is meant to celebrate the worldwide exchange of culture and ideas.

We would like to challenge all BBASI participants, past and present, to create an informative and engaging presentation for their community (academic or ballet) describing the impact exposure to another culture has had on their lives.  As we find IEW’s mission parallel to our own, RAF will be awarding six $250 scholarships to BBASI alumni for outstanding presentations that best exemplify how BBASI experience has help them to become not just a student of ballet, but a student of the world. (more…)

Mountain Lakes girl toes Bolshoi

Daily Record Article: Safia Speer loves to dance, so getting a chance to hone her skills with the Bolshoi Ballet in Russia was a dream come true. “It was something that I really wanted to do so badly because I could study ballet with Russian teachers and the Russian masters of ballet in Russia,” she said. “I could also learn Russian language and the culture of that country. That was just so amazing to me. read more

Local Girl Dances with Bolshoi

The Loop: Through the New York-based Russian American Foundation (RAF) and the NSLI FOR YOUTH Program, funded by the U.S. Department of State, Bureau of Educational and Cultural Affairs, Olivia spent six weeks at the renowned academy studying Russian language, culture and ballet read more

Society: America’s and Russia’s Youth

“Ежегодно в Россию направляются отобранные на конкурсной основе лучшие американские школьники в возрасте от 15 до 17 лет, желающие изучать русский язык, литературу, познакомиться с жизнью россиян и подружиться с ними. Их пребывание полностью оплачивают спонсоры. На днях из Москвы вернулись 15 подростков. Они пробыли там полтора месяца и за это относительно короткое время научились хорошо общаться на русском языке, приобрели много друзей”, – сказала эксперт read more

Máire New Is First Alaskan to Attend Bolshoi Ballet Academy in Moscow

Classicalite: A year later she attended the Bolshoi Ballet academy’s six-week intensive in New York in partnership with the Russian American Foundation. She returned in 2013 and was also chosen for a scholarship to study Russian culture and ballet at the Bolshoi for another six weeks read more

San Angelo Ballerina Invited to Attend World’s Most Prestigious Ballet School In Moscow

San Angelo LIVE!: With only eight American students among the over 700 enrolled at the Bolshoi Ballet Academy, entrance to the historic school is extremely selective, reserved for only the most promising dancers around the world on an invite-only basis read more

An Alaskan Ballet Dancer Hones Her Craft at the Bolshoi

The New York Times: In 2012, [Máire New] attended the Bolshoi Ballet academy six-week intensive in New York, run in partnership with the Russian American Foundation. She returned the following year, when she was also chosen for a scholarship to study Russian culture and ballet abroad at the Bolshoi for another six weeks. (The program is co-sponsored by the foundation and the United States State Department.) “The goal is to break down stereotypes between our countries,” Ms. New said. “But on top of that, we had this incredible opportunity.” Those six weeks served as a kind of audition, and she was asked to return to the academy as a full-time student read more

Young dancer completes NSLI-Y program at Bolshoi Ballet Academy

AL.com: Birmingham teen Elizabeth Lindsey, 16, was able to spend six weeks this summer studying ballet, as well as Russian language and culture at the famed academy in Moscow, part of a program sponsored by the Russian American Foundation read more

Jamesport girl trained with famed Bolshoi Ballet

The Suffolk Times: “The Bolshoi is the biggest company in the world,” Ms. Kiel, a Babylon native, said. “And to have us accepted there was —” “A little bit surreal, I think, right?” Aela’s father, Gene, interjected. “I almost didn’t believe it.” read more

Young Dancers Discuss Ballet Summer Intensive

RiverheadLOCAL: Aela Bailey, 9, lives in Jamesport and attends Aquebogue Elementary School. She spent her summer with the Bolshoi Ballet’s summer intensive program in New York, steps from Lincoln Center at the LaGuardia School of Performing Arts read more