Principal Dancers

Maria Kochetkova

Herbert Family Principal Dancer

Maria Kochetkova

Maria Kochetkova (© Chris Hardy)

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Moscow, Russia

Company Membership:

Joined as a principal dancer in 2007.
Appointed Herbert Family Principal Dancer in 2012.

Born in Moscow, Russia, Maria Kochetkova trained at the Bolshoi School in Moscow and danced with The Royal Ballet and English National Ballet before joining San Francisco Ballet as a principal dancer in 2007. She joined American Ballet Theatre as a principal dancer in 2015 and has performed as a guest artist with Bolshoi Ballet, Mariinsky Theater in St. Petersburg, Stanislavsky Theater in Moscow, Compañía Nacional de Danza, Teatro dell'Opera di Roma, Tokyo Ballet, and Mikhailovsky Theater in St. Petersburg.

Among Kochetkova’s major roles are Giselle in Tomasson’s Giselle; Grand Pas de Deux Ballerina, Queen of the Snow, and Sugar Plum Fairy in Tomasson’s Nutcracker; Juliet in Tomasson’s Romeo & Juliet; Odette/Odile in Tomasson’s Swan Lake; Kitri in Tomasson/Possokhov’s Don Quixote; Swanilda in Balanchine’s Coppélia; Tatiana in Cranko’s Onegin; and Cinderella in Wheeldon’s Cinderella. She created principal roles in Liang’s Symphonic Dances; McGregor’s Borderlands; Page’s Guide to Strange Places; Possokhov’s Classical Symphony, Diving into the Lilacs, Francesca da Rimini, and Swimmer; Ratmansky’s From Foreign Lands; Tomasson’s Caprice, On a Theme of Paganini, and Trio; and Wheeldon’s Within the Golden Hour.

Her repertory also includes Ashton’s Symphonic Variations and Voices of Spring; Balanchine’s Allegro Brillante, Brahms-Schoenberg Quartet (2nd movement), Divertimento No. 15, “Emeralds,” “Rubies,” Scotch Symphony, Serenade, Symphony in C, and Theme and Variations; Elo’s Double Evil; Forsythe’s Artifact Suite and in the middle, somewhat elevated; Lifar’s Suite en Blanc; MacMillan’s Manon (bedroom pas de deux from Act I) and Winter Dreams; Makarova’s (after Petipa) Kingdom of the Shades, Act II from La Bayadère (Nikiya); McGregor’s Chroma; Morris’ Drink to Me Only With Thine Eyes, A Garden, and Sandpaper Ballet; Possokhov’s Bells pas de deux, Fusion and Raymonda Pas de Deux; Ratmansky’s Russian Seasons and Shostakovich Trilogy (Piano Concerto #1); Robbins’ Dances at a Gathering (Pink); Scarlett’s Hummingbird; Tomasson’s Chaconne for Piano and Two Dancers, Criss-Cross, “Haffner” Symphony, and Nanna’s Lied; and Wheeldon’s Ghosts and Number Nine.

A frequent guest artist, Kochetkova performs with companies worldwide. In July 2015 she performed a pas de deux from McGregor’s Borderlands at BalletNow at The Music Center in Los Angeles; she also performed with Roberto Bolle & Friends at Terme di Caracalla, Rome, Italy; Arena di Verona, Verona, Italy; and Teatro Grande degli Scavi, Pompeii, Italy. As a guest artist with American Ballet Theatre, she performed Nikiya in La Bayadère in 2015; Kitri in Don Quixote in 2014; and The Sleeping Beauty and Swan Lake in 2013.

Kochetkova was featured in a video for fashion designer Julien David’s spring/summer 2015 collection, the official music video for the Cathedrals’ “Unbound” (2014); the video “Spirit of Van Cleef & Arpels” (2014); and an ad for Visa Checkout and Gap (2014). She performed the role of Juliet in the 2015 film of Tomasson’s Romeo & Juliet as part of the inaugural season of Lincoln Center at the Movies: Great American Dance. In December 2008, she was featured as the Grand Pas de Deux Ballerina in the PBS Great Performances broadcast of Tomasson’s Nutcracker, co-produced by San Francisco Ballet and KQED Public Television San Francisco, in association with Thirteen/WNET New York.

Kochetkova was nominated for a Critics’ Circle National Dance Award (U.K.) for Best Female Dancer in 2014 and for a Benois de la Danse Award in 2013, for her performance as Tatiana in Cranko’s Onegin. In 2009, she was awarded the gold medal on NBC’s Superstars of Dance. She won the Isadora Duncan Dance Award for Best Individual Performance for Giselle during the 2008 Repertory Season; gold medals at the International Ballet Competitions in Korea and Italy in 2005; a gold medal at the International Ballet Competition of Luxembourg in 2003; a silver medal and the jury prize at the Varna International Ballet Competition in 2002; a silver medal at the Prix de Lausanne that same year; and a bronze medal at Moscow International Competition in 2001.

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San Francisco Ballet in Tomasson's Nutcracker. (© Erik Tomasson)

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