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Bolshoi Director Vows To Return After Recovery From Acid Attack

  • RFE/RL

Bolshoi Ballet artistic director Sergei Filin speaks to journalists as he leaves a hospital in Moscow in February.

Bolshoi Ballet artistic director Sergei Filin speaks to journalists as he leaves a hospital in Moscow in February.

German doctors have expressed optimism that Bolshoi Theater artistic director Sergei Filin will recover sufficiently from having acid thrown in his face to return to work.

Dr. Martin Hermel of Aachen University Clinic said on March 15 that Filin would probably get enough of his vision back to allow him resume work at the Bolshoi.

"Overall, however, we can say that we hope that Mr. Filin will recover to a usable vision that will allow him to go back to his normal life and his professional life," Hermel said.

Hermel cautioned it would still be several months before Filin's treatment would be completed.

"The better eye, which is the left eye, has already achieved a slight improvement in vision," he said. "However, the progress of healing is still not completed and it is likely that the eye will require further measures and possibly also operative measures."

Filin said he was feeling better and anxiously awaiting to go back to work.

"As before, I have to say that I have plenty of strength and belief and the desire to get back what was wrongly taken from me," Filin said.

"So, I will do everything and the doctors who work with me, they will do everything possible too, so I think together we will get great results."

Was Dancer Behind Attack?

Filin also lashed out verbally at his attackers.

"I'm not happy with what happened to me and with the fact that somebody decided to set themselves up as a judge and to commit this act. I am absolutely not happy about this," he said.

"As far as the suspects are concerned, the people now detained -- certainly, yes, the person who I suspected ordered the crime, belongs to this small circle of people."

Three people, including one of the theater's dancers, have been detained for the early February attack on Filin outside his Moscow home.

The dancer, Pavel Dmitrichenko, has admitted finding someone to attack Filin but said he never meant for the attack to cause such harm to the theater director.

Russian investigators have said at least part of the motive for Dmitrichenko ordering an attack on Filin was Filin's reluctance to give Dmitrichenko's girlfriend prominent roles in theater performances.

Other employees and performers at the Bolshoi Theater have expressed doubts that Dmitrichenko was the mastermind of the attack.

With reporting by ITAR-TASS, Interfax, and AP