Working remotely, Russian-style: Ballet practice at home

MOSCOW (AP) — Russians from many walks of life, including Bolshoi Ballet dancers, musicians and a mixed martial arts trainer, are struggling to adapt to self-isolation because of the coronavirus outbreak.

As the coronavirus outbreak has engulfed Russia, President Vladimir Putin has ordered a partial economic shutdown and authorities across the vast country have introduced strict quarantine measures.

Officials in Moscow and other regions have ordered most people except those working in essential sectors to stay home through April 30. Residents are only allowed to shop at nearby food stores and pharmacies, walk their dogs and remove trash.

The shutdown has driven many businesses to the verge of collapse and made millions jobless, according to estimates.

Here are some examples of people finding new ways to keep working:


Principal dancers Maria Alexandrova and Vladislav Lantratov are rehearsing their parts online. Regular training is essential for the profession that that requires daily practice.

Bolshoi orchestra concert master Boris Lifanovsky also spends hours rehearsing his cello parts at home.


Andrei Kolbasinov launched his own brand of tea, Nitka, last fall and opened his first Moscow tearoom in February only to be forced to close it the following month amid the shutdown. He keeps testing tea in a continuous effort to bring it to perfection and tries to sell his products online.


Russian Paralympic cross-country, biathlon and wheelchair racing team member Akzhana Abdikarimova is training at home. She hopes that Moscow authorities will ease their ban on visiting city parks and allow athletes to practice in early hours.


Roman Martinov is offering his trainees video lessons following the closure of all city gyms, sports schools and training sections.


Like many other musicians, Alexander Vasilyev, leader of Russian rock band Spleen, plays online concerts for his audience. Such performances have become increasingly popular amid the lockdown.


For Vladimir Smyshlenkov, the lockdown offers a chance to give drawing lessons to his 6-year-old daughter Anna, who stays home like other students and preschool children.


Veronika Pochueva, a yoga instructor, is giving lessons to those who attended her classes at a gym.


As Moscow museums remain closed, Tretyakov Gallery director Zelfira Tregulova is offering free online tours of her museum. In one of them, she was joined by popular rock musician Sergei Shnurov.


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