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Altynai Asylmuratova

Altynai Asylmuratova (born 1961) is a former Soviet and Kazakhstani prima ballerina with the Kirov Ballet/Mariinsky Theatre and a guest artist all over the world.[1] Asylmuratova was born in Alma-Ata, Kazakstan, and after graduation from the Vaganova Choreographic Institute she joined the Kirov Ballet in 1978. After four years in the corps de ballet, she was promoted to Principal Dancer in 1982.

Asylmuratova became if anything more popular in Western theaters than her "home" theater due to her frequent guest appearances abroad, including Roland Petit's company. She was much admired both for her looks and the beauty of her dancing. Her repertoire included all the classical ballet r les in Swan Lake, The Sleeping Beauty, Giselle, Don Quixote, and La Bayad re, Mikhail Fokine pieces such as The Firebird and Les Sylphides, as well as modern classics like Romeo and Juliet, works by choreographer George Balanchine and Roland Petit. She is married to fellow Mariinsky dancer Konstantin Zaklinsky, but her most frequent partner was Farouk Ruzimatov.

Videos of her dancing in Le Corsaire, La Bayad re http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=3ow9Sd5QfzA, Les Sylphides, and The Sleeping Beauty are available. In addition, Asylmuratova was the subject of a 1982 documentary Backstage at the Kirov which followed her as she prepared to dance the lead in Swan Lake.

In 2000 she was appointed Artistic Director of the Vaganova Choreographic Institute. She retired from dancing soon afterwards, to concentrate all her energy on the Vaganova Academy.

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