Prima Ballerina Assoluta, Dame.
Appointed Dame, Dancer of the Court, July 1990, By King Carl XVI Gustaf. The first dancer ever to be appointed in Sweden. Appointed Prima Ballerina Assoluta in Moscow Soviet Union 1984.
Born in Bogota, Colombia, by Finnish-Russian parents. Studied at the Royal Swedish Opera ballet School 1963-1971. Became soloist 1973, and was in 1976 promoted principal dancer, the youngest ever.
In 1972 she won the silver medal at the International Ballet Competition in Varna. Together with Per Arthur Segerström they won the first price, as the best couple in the competition. She has studied in St Petersburg (Kirov), New York, Monaco, London, Paris and Helsinki. Teachers of special importance are: Olga Lepeshinskaja, Galina Ulanova, Marika Besobrasova, Asaf Messerer, Margaretha von Bahr, Erik Bruhn, Konstantin Damianov and Simon Mottram.
As The Prima Ballerina of the Royal Swedish Ballet she has a vast repertoire from classical to modern works. She is famous for her immense charisma on stage. She was praised for her technical, lyrical and dramatical qualities in MacMillan´s Romeo and Juliet and Manon, which both became great successes with the critics.
The girl in Eliot Feld´s At Midnight, the title parts in Birgit Cullberg´s Miss Julie, Adam and Eve and Rapport, Swanhilda in Hans Brenaa´s Coppelia, Katherine in John Cranko´s Taming of the Shrew and Tatyana in Onegin was powerful portraits of a woman. The principal part in Heinz Spoerli´s Nutcracker.
Coached by Olga Lepeshinskaja, she had a great success in her debut as Odette/Odile in Swanlake. In John Neumeier´s Tristan, she brought the part of Isolde a new dimension, and in Neumeier´s A Midsummernights Dream as Hippolytia/Titania "she masters the two techniques superbly". Maria in Flemming Flindt´s The Toreador, Olga in Valery Panov´s Three Sisters. In Beryl Grey´s Sleeping Beauty she made success as Aurora and also as Caroline in Antony Tudor´s Lilac Garden, and in Erik Bruhn´s production of Giselle. In Rudi van Dantzig´s Vier Letzte Lieder she made a superb interpretation.
She has been praised for The Swan, to be one of the most beautiful in the world.
Furthermore, she has danced in ballets by: Balanchine, Limon, Bournonville, Tetley and Per Jonsson.
She has made guest appearances in Moscow (Bolshoi), St.Petersburg (Kirov), and also with a big number of companies on a tour in former Soviet Union.
In the USA she has performed in Los Angeles, San Francisco, San Antonio, Houston, Indianapolis, Chicago, Boston and New York.
Other important guest appearance: Paris, Athens, Rome, Helsinki, Havana(Cuba), Sofia, Madrid, Sevilla, Canton, Peking, Brighton, Festivals, Monaco, Belfast, Luxembourg, Weisbaden Festival, Hamburg, Savonlinna Festivals, Turin (during World Championships in football 1990), Tel Aviv, London.
Appeared during the Olympic Games in Barcelona July 1992.
At several Nijinsky Galas-Hamburg Opera. At the Prague Opera. In Tokyo 1993. The successful act, at the opening ceremony in the Athletics World Championships, Gothenburg Sweden, 1995. She performed in Sarajevo/Bosnia (March-96) at the "Open road to Sarajevo" gala. Also at a lot of minor galas and festivals all over the world.
The Bolshoi Theatre invited her, as the first Swedish ballerina ever, 1982, 1983 and in November 1984 it became possible. She danced Giselle, coached by Galina Ulanova. TASS and Sovjetskaja Kultura wrote in a review: "It shall be said that Alhanko has an inimitable, fascinating style of her own, that she added new important and interesting features to the choreography of the ballet. In addition she danced beautifully and originally attuned to the company. This is a sure sign of great mastery and talent. The performance was a great success." Miss Alhanko returned to the Bolshoi Theatre - Moscow September 1996.
She has made guest appearances together with Fernando Bujones, Valery Anisimov, Peter Breuer, Reid Andersson, Charles Jude, Jose de Udaeta, Jonas Kåge and Roine Söderlundh.
Miss Alhanko was the Swedish member of the jury in the 1982 International Ballet Competition in Jackson USA, and Helsinki, Finland 2001.
Miss Alhanko was 1992 appointed cultural ambassador for the Stockholm application, for the Olympic Games in 2004. She has also received several mark of distinction and decorated with orders, Swedish and foreign.
Beside the solo invitations Miss Alhanko, appear with different programs.
Miss Alhanko tours in Scandinavia, with a program called "Greatest Hits", and appear together with local symphonyorchestras.
Miss Alhanko also appeared together with Jose de Udaeta and PA Segerström in an act that clicked. The highly praised production was called, "An evening of ballet and...castanets". They toured all over Europe with this production.
Miss Alhanko has appeared in numerous TV productions and TV shows all over the world. Also several documentary films. She has appeared in two full length feature dance films, and in one feature film of Colin Nutley.
In March 1997 she started a tour named "A La Alhanko", which was a most spectacular dance performance, from hip hop to classical ballet, directed by Hans Marklund and produced by EMA TELSTAR. The tour was a huge success for Miss Alhanko.
Since 1998 she works on her own, with guest performances all over the world.