Galina Samsova

Female, Person

1937 –


Who is Galina Samsova?

Galina Samsova is a Russian ballet dancer and company director, now retired. Born Galina Martinovna Samtsova in Stalingrad in southwestern Russia, she began ballet training at an early age. She studied at the Kiev Opera Ballet School with Natalia Verekundova and in 1956 graduated into the Kiev Opera Ballet, where she eventually became a soloist. In 1960 she married the Canadian-Ukrainian dance teacher Alexander Ursuliak and moved with him to Canada. The following year, 1961, she joined the National Ballet of Canada in Toronto, having simplified the spelling of her maiden name from Samtsova to Samsova. Hired as a soloist, she was soon promoted to principal dancer and was cast in leading roles in Swan Lake and Giselle as well as in works by Balanchine, Tudor, and Cranko.

In 1963, Samsova was visiting London when she was recommended to Raymundo de Larraín, nephew of the marquis de Cuevas, for the title role in his lavish new production of Prokofiev's Cinderella, to be choreographed by Vaslav Orlikovsky and presented at the International Dance Festival in Paris. Making her western European debut in the role, which she danced almost every day for a month, Samsova won the festival's gold medal for a performance by a female dancer. Her lyrical interpretation of Cinderella also resulted in invitations to give guest performances in many companies, including the Marseille Opera Ballet and London Festival Ballet.

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Mar 17, 1937
Also known as
  • Galina Martinovna Samtsova

on July 23, 2013


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