Conflicts & War

Spain’s national dance company welcomes six Ukrainian dancers

Madrid, Apr 6 (EFE).- Spain’s National Dance Company (CND) has welcomed six dancers from the National Opera of Ukraine who will be able to continue their careers after the Russian invasion.

Kateryna Chupina, Yelyzaveta Semenenko, Anastasiia Hurska, Aleksandra Berozkyna, Anastasiia Kovalevsk and Marina Lastovyn’s careers were abruptly interrupted on February 24 when Russian president Vladimir Putin launched a full-scale invasion of their home nation.

A little over two weeks later, with the help of a famous Ukrainian dance couple, Anastasia and Denis Matvienko, the young dancers were able to escape Kyiv and were accepted in the CND’s Emerging Talent programme.

Before the war, the National Opera of Ukraine had a team of 160 dancers from an array of countries including Slovenia, Poland, Czech Republic and Germany, among others.

Today, most of the women and girls have escaped Ukraine while male dancers have been left behind to fight in the war.

Anastasiia Kovalevsk remembers vividly when Russian troops entered her village and forced her family out of their home.

Shortly after, with her mother and aunt, she fled to Italy before coming to Spain to continue dancing. While she is happy to be safe in Spain, she dreams of returning to Ukraine.

“We still have a lot of pain and we are wounded inside,” fellow dancer, Kateryna Chupina, says.

Three of the six young dancers will perform at the Teatro Real in Madrid, where they will debut with the CND in Giselle, a performance directed and choreographed by Joaquín De Luz. EFE


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