Consider it a near spiritual experience, and we’re not talking about actual church. But before you watch the amazing results of the collision of two amazing artists, you should know a little backstory on Sergei Polunin. It also would help a lot to understand the often misunderstood meaning of the song “Take me to church.” Without knowing either, the dance is beautiful. Viewing it with knowledge of both artists catapults it into the category of breathtaking.
Sergei Polunin is a Ukrainian ballet dancer. The twenty-five-year-old began dancing at age four at a small ballet studio when his mother felt drawn to enroll him. She didn’t even particularly like ballet, but it was soon clearly evident that Sergei Polunin had a gift and a passion. Unfortunately, what Polunin didn’t have were wealthy parents. So, early on his life, his father went to work hundreds of miles away to support his study at the barre. His parents would live separately for years, his mother also working, in order to pay for his ballet lessons. There was an ultimate goal: to become a principal dancer with the British Royal Ballet. Not only did that dream come true, Sergei went even further and is currently a principal dancer with The Stanislavsky Music Theatre and the Novosibirsk State Academic Opera and Ballet Theatre in Russia. All of that is amazing, but even more amazing are the reports that perhaps his mother has still never seen him perform live.
Meanwhile, in Ireland, Hozier was slaying his own demons. While his hit single sounds like a spiritual tribute to organized religion, not much could be further from the truth. The song is about the spiritual redemption of intense sexuality and humanism, according to the artist.
“I would not like to think of (the song) as an indictment against religion, or an indictment against institutions. Perhaps (the song) discusses institutions that undermine some of the more natural parts of being a person, or humanity in some way, shape or form. The song is about asserting yourself and reclaiming your humanity through an act of love. Turning your back on the theoretical thing, something that’s not tangible, and choosing to worship or love something that is tangible and real.”
Whether or not Sergei Polunin is aware of Hozier’s lyrical intent, he produces an incredible summation of intensity, anguish and passion through his dance. The following is the incredible combination of the song and the ballet.
Readers, please share your reactions to this awe-inspiring production.
[photo via boredpanda.com]