This is in response to the article “What went wrong in Ballet Philippines” (Feb. 16).
The author of the article, Ms Marge Enriquez, stated that the Russian Embassy supposedly was consulted, therefore, giving the impression we may be involved in the appointment of new artistic director of Ballet Philippines.
As Press Secretary of the Embassy I officially declare that the Russian diplomatic mission in Manila has never meddled in that matter. The Embassy conducts its daily business in accordance with what is required and follows strict adherence to the principles of diplomacy. The Embassy cannot be obliged to give any kind of recommendations, engage in politics, nor interfere in any internal affairs of Philippine public institutions like Ballet Philippines. We do not stoop down to malicious innuendos or believe unfounded statements. If Ballet Philippines needs some kind of support (e.g. request for interpreter or to give our opinion about background of Mariinsky Theatre), they should send us official request, and we will respond accordingly.
When it comes to promotion of culture, everyone agrees that culture should unite us all across continents and nations. We are not aware about the disputes within the BP management and it is not our business.
—NATALIA LINOVITSKAYA, PRESS SECRETARY
In my interview with Maan Hontiveros, vice chair of Ballet Philippines’ board of trustees, she mentioned that they sought assistance from various embassies, including the Russian Federation. The board spoke directly with Ambassador Igor Khovaev and Victor Balashov, counsellor.—MARGE C. ENRIQUEZ