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The cast of characters in the Bolshoi attack

MOSCOW (AP) — The story of the acid attack on the Bolshoi ballet chief has plot twists and colorful characters worthy of the grand Moscow theater. Here is a look at the cast, which includes the Bolshoi soloist who confessed to organizing the attack, his ambitious dancer girlfriend and the ex-con accused of throwing the jarful of acid at the ballet chief on a dark winter night.

— Sergei Filin. The artistic director, a boyish 42-year-old former Bolshoi dancer, suffers severe burns to his eyes and face in the Jan. 17 attack, which the theater management links to Filin's power to decide which dancers are awarded the prized roles. The attack exposes a culture of fierce competition and intrigue at the famed theater, where Filin's rivals include a veteran principal dancer and his protégés.

— Pavel Dmitrichenko. The 29-year-old soloist admits to organizing the attack, but tells a Moscow court Thursday he never intended for it to cause such harm to Filin. In his most famous roles the dancer plays villainous or violent men, and his new real-life role adds a creepiness factor to the photographs of him leaping across the stage with a dagger or sword in hand. Dmitrichenko says he was angry at Filin for what he describes as corruption and favoritism at the theater, while reports have played up his relationship with a young ballerina who feels she has been unfairly passed over for starring roles.

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