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Galina Alexandrova (left) and Marina Alexandrova (center) at Bolshoi Ballet Academy

Who We Are

In addition to preparing students for professional ballet careers, CBSF is a growing place where students learn, become, and flourish. Through an education in classical ballet guided by the Vaganova Method, opportunities for personal and professional growth, and artistic development - CBSF challenges students to reach their highest potential and enrich their lives through dance.

 

Our Values

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There are no shortcuts in ballet

  • Strong foundation and consistent syllabus grounded in Vaganova training

  • Holistic experience through a variety of dance classes

  • Master Teachers who impart their knowledge while nurturing each student

Preparation + opportunity = success

  • Professional-quality performances multiple times a year

  • Career guidance, mentorship, and professional connections

  • Cultural immersions (the most noteworthy being at Bolshoi Academy, home of the Vaganova method)

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Artistry

Develop creativity and artistic expression through dance

Artist Statement

Our youth hold the future of the arts in their hands. Through every pirouette, bow, and leap, they connect with the artists who came before them, the artists within themselves, and the artists within us all. They understand that ballet is more than a sport, and it is far from an irrelevant practice. Like all true beauty, classical ballet transcends time while honoring its cultural heritage.

Our purpose is to educate and share classical ballet with our youth, guiding their individual growth as well as contributing to the performing arts in our home city of San Francisco.

Our History

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Our Artistic Director

Galina Alexandrova was born in Moscow, Russia, into a family of ballet. Galina's father, Mikhail, was a soloist with the Moiseyev Dance Company; her mother, Svetlana, was a principal with the Stanislavsky Ballet in Moscow for over twenty years. At age ten, Galina was accepted by Bolshoi Ballet Academy in Moscow and upon graduation she was selected by Artistic Director Yuri Grigorovich to become a member of the Bolshoi Ballet, where she danced for seven years. 

 

1987 

While on tour with the Bolshoi in San Francisco, Galina met Ken Patsel - a stagehand at the San Francisco Opera. They soon after married, and Galina immigrated to the United States where she joined the San Francisco Ballet. There, she performed soloist roles in works by George Balanchine, Lew Christensen, Helgi Tomasson and more. She also worked directly with world-class choreographers such as James Kudelka, David Bintley, and Glen Tetley. Galina continued to dance after the birth of her two elder children, Sasha and Katia, finally retiring from professional dancing after the birth of her third child, Nastia.

2003 

The opportunity to become Artistic Director of CBSF presented itself. Equipped with vast knowledge from her own training and impressive career, Galina was further mentored by her mother, a master Vaganova teacher at the Bolshoi Ballet Academy. Throughout her tenure as Artistic Director, Galina has built an international reputation for CBSF as one of the finest Vaganova training facilities in North America. Many of Galina's students have graduated to dance professionally in companies such as ABT, Dutch National Ballet, Joffrey Ballet, Semper - Oper Ballet Dresden, Germany, Austin Ballet, Alberta Ballet, Colorado Ballet, and more.

 

Connecting to our roots

We are proud to work in partnership with Galina’s own ballet school, the Bolshoi Ballet Academy in Moscow, Russia. Galina’s top students have travelled to study there, and in fact, were the first American women ever to graduate from the Bolshoi Ballet Academy.