By Bastien Vivès. Published by Jonathan Cape.
Hardcover, 208 pages, B&W, 2014.
As a very young girl, Polina Oulinov is taken on as a special pupil by the famous ballet teacher Professor Bojinsky. He is very demanding and refuses to adapt his standards to the talents of his pupils, and Polina has to work hard and make great sacrifices in order to reach the level Bojinsky senses she has the talent for. When she graduates and is admitted to the official theatre school, she discovers that Bojinsky’s view of ballet is only one of many and that she can’t adapt to new rules, new visions. She flees Russia for Berlin, where she meets a group of drama students. Together they create a new form of theatre – and conquer the world.
Brilliantly drawn, Polina is a moving and intimate story of self-discovery. It confirms Bastien Vivès as one of the most exciting talents at work in the graphic novel field today.