Larissa Saveliev is the founder and Artistic Director of Youth America Grand Prix, the largest international student ballet competition. In addition to pulling off a huge enterprise that YAGP has become, Ms Saveliev’s first concern and constant focus is understanding how she can help these talented young dancers succeed. A former Bolshoi Ballet Dancer, Larissa knows thousands of participating students personally. She nurtures them and helps them get connected to the right programs and top-tier professional companies, like American Ballet Theatre, Paris Opéra Ballet, and San Francisco Ballet.
YAGP is a very big deal: the competition showcases new takes on variations, dictates new Ballet trends and pushes students to the forefront of technical and artistic excellence. “Don’t compare yourself to anybody, but yourself,” she says. “You may not have the perfect feet, the ideal body type, but as long as you dance better than you did yesterday, you are improving.”