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March 06, 2013

Bolshoi Soloist Confesses to Planning Acid Attack on Artistic Director

by Jessica Golloher

Russian police say three men have confessed to being involved in the assault on Sergei Filin, the artistic director at the world renowned Bolshoi Theater.

The latest developments in the Bolshoi Theater acid attack story read like the plot of a Russian novel.

When Tchaikovsky composed Swan Lake, little did he know that the man currently known here in Moscow for playing Von Rothbart, the villain, would actually live up to his character.

Moscow police say lead dancer and soloist Pavel Dmitrichenko has confessed to plotting the January assault against artistic director Sergei Filin.

Dmitrichenko was questioned by police Wednesday morning.

Dmitrichenko says he was the man behind the attack, but that it went further than he planned.

Filin was coming home from work on January 17 when a man threw sulfuric acid in his face.  He suffered burns to his face and eyes. Filin has had several surgeries to try and restore his eyesight and is currently receiving treatment in Germany.

Police spokesman Maxim Kolosvetov says that two other men have also confessed to being involved in the assault.

He says police have also arrested two other men in conjunction with the attack. One man drove the getaway car and another assaulted the artistic director.

Police say that 29-year-old Dmitrichenko didn’t like the artistic decisions Filin was making.

The Bolshoi has been plagued with infighting over the theater’s artistic direction.  As a result, several directors have left over the last few years.