Acted as Project Manager and lead Editor for this book.
SERGEI POLUNIN AUTOBIOGRAPHY
FREE: A Life in Images and Words
Released in Spring 2021 worldwide by leading international publisher teNeues.
Renowned dancer, actor and artist Sergei Polunin is widely acknowledged as one of the most prodigious, dazzling and charismatic talents of his generation. Now he tells his extraordinary life story for the first time.
With an introduction and foreword from Dame Helen Mirren and Albert Watson, OBE, this richly illustrated autobiography features hundreds of images from some of the world’s most highly regarded photographers as well as more personal, intimate never-before-seen family photos, all set alongside Sergei’s inimitable personal narrative.
Dame Helen Mirren comments:
“Sergei’s high art and extraordinary physicality is infused with something I can only describe as a mad passion … he reveals emotion that is disciplined and contained, classical even, but raw underneath.”
Ukraine-born Sergei Polunin was awarded a scholarship to study at the Royal Ballet School in London when he was 13. His first soloist performance for the Royal Ballet was at the age of 19 and he was promoted to principal at the age of 20, the youngest in the history of the company.
Today Sergei is known not only as a dancer and producer – and the virtuoso of Hozier’s ‘Take Me to Church’ video, directed by David LaChapelle and which to date has over 30 million views on YouTube – but also as an actor and as a creative artist, leading his own independent company (www.poluninink.com) in new ballet projects that evolve the classical vocabulary of dance and introduce it to wider audiences. Its regular repertoire is led by Polunin performing around the world with an international cast of dancers and artists.
In FREE, Polunin presents a stunning selection of photographs from his life and work, taking his readers and legions of fans behind the scenes – from his childhood and through his career spanning dance, fashion and film – to share with them the emotional highs and lows of his journey towards artistic maturity and mastery.
Sergei Polunin: FREE – A Life in Images and Words
Large format 24.5 x 31.4 cm, 272 pages, with over 500 colour and b/w photographs.
Hardcover, Text English, Forewords by Dame Helen Mirren & Albert Watson, OBE
£45 ISBN 978-3-96171-337-0
Published by teNeues Publishing, 2021, www.teneues.com
Cover photo: © Albert Watson
In Tatler 27 May 2021
Ballet’s baddest boy Sergei Polunin on why he feels ‘free’ at last)
‘As for the title of the book, it’s certainly very apt – ‘freedom’ is regularly cited in our conversation. ‘In my opinion, for artists, for dancers or for anybody, I think the feeling of freedom is so essential – whether that be freedom of money or freedom of creation.’ As restrictions ease, Polunin’s worldwide projects resume; there’s the new music video for Depeche Mode In Your Room, the sequel to his first film, Dancer, and Polunin Ink’s Romeo and Juliet is en route to the Royal Albert Hall come December – and, true to his book’s title, he’s appears to be feeling freer than ever.’
In Sueddeutsche Zeitung daily newspaper 1 May 2021
Außenseiter: Fünf Favoriten des Feuilletons – Kultur – SZ.de (sueddeutsche.de)
From “Bad Boy of Ballet” to refined author: Sergei Polunin.
‘The English-language text is also astonishingly interesting: not a self-congratulation, but a tribute to friends, supporters and companions – all those who caught Sergei when he fell and celebrated triumphs with him again and again. No less than Helen Mirren sums it up in the preface: under the classically refined dance surface lurks raw emotion. In 2018, Polunin founded his own production label, in 2020 he became a father. “FREE” ends with this new beginning. It is certainly only the last for the time being.’
In The Telegraph 30 April 2021
Sergei Polunin: I think everybody, all the older ballet generation, should be in jail.
‘His book “is closing a chapter in a big way”, a “tribute” to “good friends” whom he doesn’t, or won’t, see any more. If it is a lot more polite and conventional than you might expect, basically lots of photos and edited thoughts on the past, it was still typically dramatic in its execution.’