BORIS EIFMAN, founder and artistic director of the St.Petersburg State Academic Ballet, is one of the most distinguished figures in contemporary theater. Ever since his first productions, Eifman has always provoked a stormy reaction from audiences and piqued the interest of critics.
Boris Eifman graduated from the Ballet Department of the Leningrad State Conservatory. From 1970 to 1977 he was a choreographer at the Avaganova Russian Ballet Academy. In 1977, Eifman established the New Ballet of Leningrad (now the St.Petersburg State Academic Ballet Theater). A theater that performed the works a single choreographer was quite a unique phenomenon at the time.
Boris Eifman is the author of more than forty ballets. Ballets based on classic works of world literature have a prominent place in his creative resume: Fyodor Dostoevsky's Idiot and The Karamazovs, Emile Zola's Thérèse Raquin, Mikhail Bulgakov's The Master and Margarita, Miguel de Cervantes's Don Quixote or Fantasies of a Madman, Leo Tolstoy's Anna Karenina, and Anton Chekhov's The Seagull, among others. In the last decade, other works have also met with great international acclaim, including Tchaikovsky (1993), Red Giselle (1997), Russian Hamlet (1999), Musagète (2004), and Anna Karenina (2005).
Boris Eifman's ballets have achieved great renown all over the world, and have toured throughout Europe, Asia, America, and Africa. Eifman was honored with the distinguished title of the People's Artist of Russia in 1995; he has also received the Russian State Award, in 1999, the St. Petersburg theater prize Golden Soffite, in 1995, 1996, 1997, 2001, and 2005, the Golden Mask theater award, in 1996 and 1999, and the Benois De La Danse prize as the best choreographer of 2005 (awarded for the ballet Anna Karenina), in 2006. Eifman was inducted into France's Order of Arts and Letters in 1999, and received knighthood in the third-level order "For Achievements in the Name of the Fatherland" in 2007.