- Tell us a little about yourself and how long you’ve been living in St. Petersburg.
- When I was an 11-year-old boy living in the state of Montana, USA, I won the Youth America Grand Prix medal. Soon afterwards, I was noticed by the Bolshoi Ballet Academy and was invited to study in Moscow. I became the first American to graduate both the intermediate and advanced departments of the academy. After working eight months at the Royal Ballet in London, I got an offer to be a second soloist in the Mikhailovsky Theater in St. Petersburg, and now at just 20, I am the legendary imperial theater’s leading male dancer!
- What is your favorite district in St. Petersburg and why?
- I love the center of the city, all along Nevsky Prospect and especially around my Theater - the Mikhailovsky Theater on Arts Square. St. Petersburg is beautiful even in the places it shouldn’t be.
- Is there anything you particularly like about spring in St. Petersburg?
- There’s so much beautiful green space in St. Petersburg, the lilacs start to bloom and it’s easier to get around the city so we start spending a lot more time outside.
- What are some of the spring events you’re most looking forward to?
- I have a new clothing line coming out sponsored by Grishko (the world-famous leader in dancewear, shoes and accessories), which I am designing while being inspired by Apollo and his Muses.
- If a visitor can visit only one ballet performance this spring (March/April/May), which one should they visit?
- I definitely recommended Giselle or La Sylphide - both are romantic ballets that are perfect after a day exploring the city! Make sure to check out the Mikhailovsky Theatre website to see when I am dancing. I will also soon have my own website up www.julianmackay.com.
- Apart from the Mikhailovsky Theater, what are some of the other cultural musts for a tourist visiting St. Petersburg?
- The Hermitage and the area around Palace Square are great! The Repin Academy is a must, as is a boat trip on the canals and the Neva. Just make sure to dress warm for the latter!
- Can you give our readers some insider tips? What are some of your favorite places in St. Petersburg that a tourist won’t find in a guide book?
- The Roerich Museum, which is newly opened on Vasilyevsky Island. This Russian painter and philosopher is the subject of an original ballet “Warrior of Light” that I am producing and performing in along with my three siblings, who are also ballet dancers.
- Apart from the bad words, what are some of the most essential Russian words/phrases everyone should know?
- Chyut-chyut - this is actually one of the first Russian words I learned and for a couple of months over-used it a ton so all of my classmates at the Bolshoi Ballet Academy had a running joke about it. Teremok is actually the name of a restaurant that serves blinis (Russian pancakes) and if you are a traveler on a budget it’s a cheap and great place to eat.
- Do you have any plans for the summer yet? If yes, what are they?
- I am going on tour with my own show and a Grammy winning cellist, so stay tuned!
Wednesday Oct 23 19:00 …
|Swan Lake in Mikhailovsky|
Wednesday Nov 13 19:00 …