Vaganova Ballet Academy
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People of the Vaganova Ballet Academy

Zhanna Ayupova
Artistic Director of the Vaganova Ballet Academy 
First Vice-rector

Zhanna Ayupova was born in Petrozavodsk. In 1984 she graduated from the Leningrad Choreographic School (coached by Ninel Kurgapkina) and was invited to become a member of the Kirov Ballet Company (Mariinsky Theatre). From 1987 Zhanna Aupova appeared as a featured soloist with the company preforming both lyric and dramatic parts. From 2000 to 2013 she had been coaching ballet dancers at the Mikhailovsky Theatre.

From 2013 – First Vice-rector and Artistic Director of the Vaganova Ballet Academy.

Over the course of her dance career Zhanna Ayupova has performed a great number of roles in major classical and neo-classical works. Her most prominent roles include Giselle (Giselle), Princess Aurora (The Sleeping Beauty), Marie (The Nutcracker), Raymonda (Raymonda), Kitri (Don Quixote), Nikiya (La Bayadère), Odette/Odile (Swan Lake), Manon (Manon), Soloist (Theme and Variations), Soloist (Symphony in C), Terpsichore (Apollo), Young Lady (Le Spectre de la Rose) and many others.

Zhanna Ayupova is a prize winner of the Moscow International Ballet Competition (1985).

In 2008 she was honored with the title People's Artist of Russia.