The Royal Winnipeg Ballet has turned to eastern Europe to add two new dancers for the 2013-14 season.
Artjom Maksakov, a Ukrainian-born dancer who was most recently with the Boston Ballet, joins the RWB as a soloist.
Olga Malinovskaya, who studied at Moscow’s Bolshoi Ballet Academy before joining the Estonian National Ballet in 2008, joins the corps de ballet.
Maksakov and Malinovskaya were both named among the outstanding dancers of the 2010 season by Dance Europe magazine.
The RWB has also promoted Sophia Lee, who last season starred in Moulin Rouge — The Ballet and Twyla Tharp’s The Princess & The Goblin, among others, to soloist.
"I am delighted to be welcoming new talent into the company both from inside and outside our organization," RWB artistic director André Lewis said in a release Tuesday. "New faces bring fresh ideas and approaches, which is an absolutely essential part of the natural process of evolution for our company.
Four students from the Royal Winnipeg Ballet School, Katie Bonnell, Kylie Duggan, Manami Tsubai and Ryan Vetter, have been hired as apprentices for the upcoming season, and two apprentices, RWB school grads Stephan Possin and Chenxin Liu, have been promoted to the corps de ballet.
The RWB’s 74th season opens Wednesday, Oct. 16, with the world première of The Handmaid’s Tale, a ballet adapted from Margaret Atwood’s acclaimed novel.