Dancer: A Documentary on Sergei Polunin

Sergei Polunin is one of the most talented male ballet dancers from Ukraine who devoted his life to ballet at a very young age.

His dedication led him to becoming the youngest principal dancer, age 19, at the Royal Ballet in London.

Two years later, he left the company because of the discipline, physical stress on his body, underpayment, and the ballet’s complete consumption of his life.


Sergei, then, became the bad boy of ballet as he flaunted his several tattoos and reckless behavior, which was his own way of exploring life’s options after so many years of life strictly devoted to ballet.

Shortly after he quit, he released a video of him dancing to Hozier’s “Take Me to Church” as a way of saying goodbye to dance forever.

When the video went viral, he had a change of heart and decided to continue dancing. Consequently, he joined the Stanislavsky Ballet and the Novosibirsk Ballet.

After his return, Sergei began working on a modern ballet with his girlfriend completely contrary to the traditional ballet. However, rebellion and individuality was his ultimate goal.


Sergei decided that sharing his story via documentary would relate to many other dancers and fulfill his dream of producing film. The film by Steve Cantor takes us through Sergei’s struggle to overcome the many obstacles that he faced in ultimately pursuing his destined career in ballet.

Check out my presentation of this documentary on prezi!

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