“It was like a real person, really touching me, and it was like, ‘Mmmm!’” Her bright eyes widen with mischief at the memory. It’s so dark which is what makes it so hard – it has everything,’ she explains. You need to believe every second, it’s really intense.’. Sometimes people say I just don’t get enough of the language to know!” She laughs. Because I’ve worked all the time, the past two, three years, working working working, these past few weeks have felt really strange. Is it not? Osipova is joined by renowned contemporary dancer Jason Kittelberger in Six Years Later, by Roy Assaf The newest of these is Pure Dance, which premiered last September at Sadler's Wells and comes to New York City Center April 3–6. ‘There are times when you want to be helpless’ … the Royal Ballet star, now the subject of a film called Force of Nature Natalia. You need that creation inside yourself to understand and feel. Since then, she has performed it around the world. The Russian superstar ballerina Natalia Osipova (pictured top), who's presented a couple of individual projects at Sadler's Wells in recent years, will perform a duet specially choreographed by her life partner, the American dancer and choreographer Jason Kittelberger, who will dance with her. The ballet, choreographed by Kenneth Macmillan, a Royal Ballet legend who Osipova says contributed to her decision to want to dance in the UK, is a rip-roaring piece. As Anna Anderson in the third act of Anastasia, 2016, Anna Anderson’s divisive story has believers and sceptics, with some who trust her to be the Grand Duchess and others who consider her just a troublesome fantasist. I can’t work like that.”, Does something about the nature of ballet companies engender a dysfunctional atmosphere? He really showed me a different way of experiencing dance.”, Gerry Fox, who filmed the couple dancing in the studio, talks about their “sensual tension, two people giving their all through their bodies and being so free with each other”. “I need more comfort, and if I don’t get it I become resentful. Has she had to postpone a wedding? ‘The ballet is about the Romanov family, it’s a really big story in Russia. “She was talking about the show,” says Osipova, who had just finished performing The Mother, a contemporary dance drama. Sergei Polunin and Natalia Osipova in Run Mary Run by Arthur Pita for Natalia Osipova at Sadler's Wells, London. My teachers would be telling me off, but I had such an inner certainty that it was impossible to knock it out of me.” Where does that confidence come from? As Tatiana in Onegin at the Royal Opera House in 2015. In 2011, Osipova performed in Roy Assaf's Six Years Later, partnering with Jason Kittelberger and the same year danced in Valse Triste by Alexei Ratmansky. Osipova came from the Bolshoi to be a principal dancer with the Royal Ballet, and in this evening’s programme, she was paired with three male dancers, Jonathan Goddard, David Hallberg and Jason Kittelberger. Someone who is used to a flat out schedule of back-to-back performances. She’s content now at the Royal Ballet, a company with a healthier culture than most she has experienced. “But the men are always there somewhere!”. ... Osipova and Jason Kittelberger in "Six Years Later" Johan Persson, Courtesy Royal Opera House. I was always like, “can you make the interval, five, ten minutes longer?” You need to speak with yourself and say, “now I’m ready”. June 10, 2019. He’s used to seeing me in more beautiful characters like Swan Lake, he’s never seen me in such a dramatic, dark ballet as this.’. “It all depends on who is leading, and what they encourage and what they cut off,” says Osipova. Usually it’s in the morning for two hours and in the evening for two hours and now we are here all the time and they’re so happy.’, Will Osipova be tuning in to watch herself next week? “Giselle,” Osipova tells the camera at one point, “it’s me.” What did she mean? Yes, but only because Kittelberger hasn’t seen it before. With solos and duets featuring dancers Jason Kittelberger and Jonathan Goddard, Pure Dance also stages the highly anticipated, electric partnership between Osipova and American Ballet Theatre principal David Hallberg. In my career, I can only think of Kenneth MacMillan’s Anastasia.” (Premiered in 1967, Anastasia is about a woman who claimed to be the daughter of tsar Nicholas II.) So far they have released a diverse selection from opera blockbuster La Traviata to Arthur Pita’s The Metamorphosis, and this Friday 15 May at 7pm Anastasia will be premiered with Osipova as the eponymous lead character. ‘I hate it. Why is she spending her time on this?’” Osipova sighs. Watch the trailer for Force of Nature Natalia on Vimeo, his recent macho and fat-shaming tirades online. Why is she spending her time on this?’” Osipova sighs. Physically and emotionally, I’m a really strong person, in art and in life. The staged descent into madness is quite a transformation to undergo in a single interval and something that Ospiova finds challenging. Dancing with Kittelberger was a revelation for Osipova. The last programme Natalia Osipova commissioned at Sadler’s Wells was tenacious but shaky, the Royal Ballet superstar storming the stage with then-boyfriend Sergei Polunin and a trio of hit-and-miss contemporary numbers. The Mother, a two-hander based on the bleak tale of a woman desperately trying to save her dying baby, often leaves Osipova bloodied and bruised from its physical floorwork and emotionally tested trying to reach the heart of the character. Set to piano studies by Jean Sibelius, the duet sees them in a ‘physical conversation devoid of language miscommunication’. In terms of a ‘lockdown routine’, she tells me: ‘I do what I do every morning, there are two to three hours in the morning when I am stretching and doing physicality work.’ She also does barre but has to be careful with pointe shoes, because, ‘I do have a nice floor’ (and wooden floors can be very slippery). Facebook Twitter Pinterest. Osipova has danced with many notable partners, including former boyfriends Ivan Vasiliev and Sergei Polunin, but this was different. The season then continued with her appearances in various solo performances, including under Ludwig … Add Comment. “I’m more sensitive to the story,” she says. Annabel Sampson, Natalia playing Anastasia in Anastasia in 2016 at the Royal Opera House. Osipova, as a Russian, feels a certain connection to the story. 3,763 Followers, 780 Following, 500 Posts - See Instagram photos and videos from Jason Kittelberger (@jasonkittelberger) Osipova, 33, is very straightforward, not starry or effusive – unlike when she gets on stage, when she’ll propel herself towards dramatic extremes. Last year, in her self-curated programme Pure Dance, she and Kittelberger performed Roy Assaf’s Six Years Later, a portrait of a tired and tetchy relationship, in which, the noted New York Times critic Siobhan Burke, Kittelberger emerged as an equal to the charismatic Osipova on stage. The 183-year-old Edinburgh department store has been another casualty of the pandemic, By It’s really interesting’. Not only has the show matured and grown but Osipova’s ownership of all the work she performs has … That’s the gift I have.”. TRIAL OFFER: 3 Issues for £1. Natalia Osipova and Jason Kittelberger in Six Years Later. How’s she getting on? In this role, with Osipova as Anna, she has to believe her truth. She’s just got engaged to the dancer/choreographer Jason Kittelberger, whom she’s been dating for about a year. It depicts the true story of Anna Anderson, a woman who believed herself to be Anastasia, the youngest daughter of Tsar Nicholas II and the only survivor from the assassination of the Romanovs in 1918. I understand every scene. December 23, 2020. Some of her fans might not be ready to accompany the Russian ballerina on her odyssey into experimental dance, but Osipova is an artist who trusts her instincts: from her 2001 decision to walk out of one of the world’s most prestigious ballet companies, the Bolshoi, in favour of a second-tier institution, the Mikhailovsky Theatre, to launching a parallel career in contemporary dance while still one of the top classical ballerinas. "I really like to try new things," she told the Financial Times last year. But Russian-born superstar ballerina Natalia Osipova, a principal dancer with The Royal Ballet since 2013, is now getting ready to return to the stage after a seven-month hiatus. Sometimes we speak just about physiology, sexuality …” She pauses and laughs. I’m fine, I’m okay now.’, As the title character in Giselle at the Royal Opera House, 2013, The sale brings together exquisite pieces from two great aristocratic dynasties, the Mountbattens and the Knatchbulls, By Osipova with Vadim Muntagirov in La Bayadère. Jason really gets it and gives me everything I need. It sounds like Osipova has found her lockdown rhythm, no doubt helped along by her American fiancé Jason Kittelberger (a contemporary dancer). I’m very aware of my own power. The most entrancing moments saw Osipova and Kittelberger, dressed in everyday jeans and t-shirts, shoulder wrestling. This site uses cookies to improve your experience and deliver personalised advertising. People kill her family, her child, her husband, it’s a lot for her,’ she explains earnestly. It sounds like Osipova has found her lockdown rhythm, no doubt helped along by her American fiancé Jason Kittelberger (a contemporary dancer). This new duet will be danced by Jason Kittelberger and one of the world’s greatest ballerinas and Royal Ballet principal, Natalia Osipova to Jean Sibelius’s 13 Pieces for Piano, Op.76: No.2 – Etude arranged for cello and classical guitar. ‘I know that every time I do this dance I’m sick; I really cry, I really feel pain. Dancer: Natalia Osipova. I ask how important the story is? Why am I not understood?”. Valse Triste by Alexei Ratmansky. This new duet will be danced by Jason Kittelberger and one of the world’s greatest ballerinas and Royal Ballet principal, Natalia Osipova to Jean … Bleak tale … Osipova in The Mother at Gorky Moscow Art theatre. “In contemporary,” Osipova adds, “it’s different. Of course, for me, it was strange to be home without work – but now, I’m much better. “The woman said, ‘She could have danced another classical ballet. Pure Dance is a curated evening of seven pieces, designed to showcase Natalia Osipova’s talent and versatility. Her passion and self-belief give the title to Force of Nature Natalia, a new documentary by director Gerry Fox that follows Osipova as she rehearses for three shows: La Bayadère at the Royal Ballet; The Mother, Arthur Pita’s dark retelling of the Hans Christian Andersen story; and a new duet created with dancer and Osipova’s fiance Jason Kittelberger, more of whom later. It’s a really good time for me now.”. 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'Mmmm, it was electrifying!’ Natalia Osipova on finding a perfect partner. Ave Maria by Yuka Oishi. “Traditionally in ballet,” she says, “you are expressing love for a man and there are very few exceptions. Natalia Osipova and Jason Kittelberger in Qutb by Sidi Larbi Cherkaoui. It’s so hard. “When I started dancing it, I was 19 or 20, and I was doing it in a very non-traditional way. “He’s clearly gifted, and I really wish that he nurtures it rather than undermines it.”, Osipova seems able to harness all the drama and drive for her dancing and thinks she has another five years of performing at her peak. Kittelberger provides Osipova with essential support off stage as well as on. “So different,” she says. Natalia Osipova and Jason Kittelberger barely touch until they reach the opposite end of the stage and then began to seamlessly fold into each other. One of the great exponents of classical ballet, Natalia Osipova, finds herself in an ambivalent dynamic with Jason Kittelberger in the world première of his Once with. Ahead of Anastasia’s premiere this Friday, Tatler talks exclusively to Natalia Osipova about becoming Anna Anderson for the Kenneth Macmillan production and how life in lockdown isn’t so bad with her fiancé and four dogs, By Hope Coke. Kittelberger is currently working alongside Sidi Larbi Cherkaoui as assistant choreographer, rehearsal director and dancer in productions like Shell Shock, Fractus V, Pluto, Firebird with Stuttgart Ballet, m¡longa, Puz/zle, Icon, Harbor Me with L.A. Dance Project, Satyagraha, Pelléas et Mélisande, and Qutb, where he partners with Natalia Osipova and James O’Hara. Welcome to Tatler. “It’s the most natural part for me,” she says. You can opt out at any time or find out more by reading our cookie policy. Osipova and Kittelberger exchange best practice, she teaches him barre and he teaches her yoga and some contemporary dance (what Osipova describes as like ‘a different language’ in dance terms). ‘Now, it’s okay,’ she tells me in English inflected with a deep Russian accent, ‘I’m taking it step-by-step, week-by-week. Dancers: Natalia Osipova and Jason Kittelberger Music: Deefly, Moonlight Sonata by Ludwig van Beethoven, Reflections of my life by Marmalade. They met in 2018 performing Roy Assaf’s Six Years Later, a portrait of a tired and tetchy relationship, where Kittelberger was credited as being an ‘equal’ to the bewitching Osipova on stage. I feel good, I have my four dogs, my fiancé, we’ve bought a new house. These days, much like the rest of us, she’s stuck at home – which doesn’t translate so well for a performer of Osipova’s calibre. They met in 2018 performing Roy Assaf’s Six Years Later, a portrait of a tired and tetchy relationship, where Kittelberger was credited as being an ‘equal’ to the bewitching Osipova on stage. ... Osipova and Jason Kittelberger in "Six Years Later" Johan Persson, Courtesy Royal Opera House. The film sees them working on a new creation, I’m Fine, about the ups and downs of a relationship. “I’m not a mother myself yet,” she says, “so I was anxious that it wouldn’t be a realistic portrayal because I don’t know what it’s like.” It’s similar to how you feel about your dogs, I tell her, but times a hundred. Now a principal with the Royal Ballet, and boasting a nonstop freelance schedule on the side, Osipova is a powerful dancer of explosive jumps and dramatic intensity. We meet at her flat in Little Venice, London – smart modern decor and the feel of someone who’s not home much – where we are joined by an interpreter and two over-excited dogs. In recent years, Royal Ballet principal and international touring artist Natalia Osipova has curated her own evenings of new works, collaborating with a slew of contemporary choreographers. “It’s funny you make that comparison,” she laughs, “because when we got them, they were just puppies, two months old. Osipova, Kittelberger and James O’Hara in Sidi Larbi Cherkaoui’s trio. “It’s my fifth season now and I’ve had not a single conflict. Dancers don’t often come quite like Natalia Osipova, varyingly described as ‘the face of 21st century ballet’ as well as a ‘force of nature’ for her explosively powerful dance and titular roles in everything from Giselle and Medusa to Anastasia. Force of Nature Natalia is out now and will be broadcast on Sky Arts on 18 June. The reason I’m speaking with Osipova today is because of the Royal Opera House’s ‘Our House to Your House’ series, where every Friday evening they stream a production in full to their YouTube channel. Many, many years later, she is completely different. ‘It was like a real person, really touching me’ … Natalia Osipova and Jason Kittelberger in Six Years Later. Dancers: Natalia Osipova and David Hallberg. “The second act is so close to me, as if I have it somewhere in my DNA.”, Osipova is not the ghostly spirit of a wronged woman, as Giselle becomes in act two, but her entire physicality alters as she embodies the role – a more vivid, chilling and unhuman Giselle than any I’ve seen. 4 Min Read ... Natalia Osipova Film – A Force of Nature Natalia. 4 Min Read It’s so difficult. “But in other companies, you can sense it, when people are envious, or don’t want you to be there, or they’re talking behind your back. And in a way, my feeling about them fed into the part.”, We talk about how rare it is in dance to depict something other than romantic love. Rebecca Cope, My heart flutters at the mention of a fiancé, is Osipova, one of the greatest ballerinas of our time, another ‘covid bride’? Natalia Osipova in Onegin. As the explosively powerful dancer makes the leap into film, she talks about feeling bloodied and bruised by her latest work – and how loving her dogs helps her perform, Last modified on Mon 10 Jun 2019 18.18 BST, Natalia Osipova was standing in a queue at Moscow airport recently, waiting for her flight back to London, when she overheard a woman mention her name. “The woman said, ‘She could have danced another classical ballet. Osipova alone embodies the bravura for which she is known in Ave Maria by Yuka Oishi, while Hallberg’s soulful virtuosity shines in In Absentia, a solo by Kim Brandstrup. ‘It’ll be really interesting for him because he’s never seen me in a role like that before. Francesca Carington, Needless to say, Osipova’s four dogs are loving having her around at the moment, her two crinkled shar peis, a chow chow called Kai and a Russian dog who resembles a snowy white wolf called Yevi. “She was talking about the show,” says Osipova, who had just finished performing The Mother, a contemporary dance drama. ‘In the first two acts she is like a child, a really happy, beautiful child. There is no information about his age yet. Natalia Osipova and Jason Kittelberger in Roy Assaf’s “Six Years Later” Photo by Johan Persson What saves the dance is the superb job that Osipova and Kittelberger do in investing their characters with a touch of humanity despite the contrived silliness of what they’re doing. I really believe what I do, it’s amazing but at the same time it’s very challenging’. “I felt quite vulnerable. 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