Svetlana Zakharova, principal dancer at the Bolshoi Ballet and the Teatro alla Scala, is widely considered the greatest living ballerinas today and reportedly cammands among the highest fees of any ballet dancer, after Sylvie Guillem and Diana Vishneva.
Zakharova was born on Lutsk, Ukraine, at 10 June 1979. At age 6 her mother took Svetlana to learn folk dancing at a local studio. At age 10 Svetlana, auditioned for and was accepted into the Kiev Coreographic School. Just 4 months later, her father was moved to East Germany army and Svetlana was withdrawn fron school. Six months leater, her family returned to Ukraine and Svetlana auditioned again for the Kiev Coreographic Scool. She was readmitted and immediately joined the second class, under teacher Valeria Sulegina.
In 1996-1997, she debuted with the Mariinsky Ballet appearing as Maria with Ruben Bobovnikov, in Rostislav Zakharov`s The Fountain of Balchchisarai. In 2003-2004 she accepted a long-standing open offer with the Bolshoi, reportedly due to discontent with the Mariinsky.
Today, Svetlana tours with the world`s great ballet companies. She is highly know for her tehnical, for her great feet and for her exceptionally high extensions, witch invite comparisons with gymnasts.