Mariafrancesca Garritano, a 33 years old ballerina for more than 17 years has been sacked by the company simply for disclosing the truth about anorexia among the ballet dancers at the La Scala.
Her interview with the Britain’s Observer last December, in which she claimed that one out of five dancers in the academy is anorexic, derived variant reactions among her peers. She also alleged the demands that the company imposes on the dancers to lose weight results in some dancers ending up in the hospital due to malnutrition and dehydration. She also mentioned that others were still beating depression and are in need of counselling until today. She also claimed that seven out of ten dancers suffer from abnormal menstrual cycle due to eating less.
Garritano, said that she still suffers from intestinal pains and bone fractures which she thinks is the negative result of erroneous dieting.
Denial from La Scala
The spokesman for La Scala, Carlo Maria Cella has denied all the allegations of Garritano. However, he admitted that there may be pressures involved but the educational methods in the past has evolved into a better one and now the school has a nutritional course to address the issue on anorexia.
Despite this denial, another ballerina from La Scala supported the statements of Garritano. Michelle Villanova, 47 and a senior dancer with the company from 1986 to 2010 said that she still saw the manifestations of eating disorder among the dancers. The mood swings and depression that the dancers face every time they gain weight is still evident.
Garritano has an inkling that her exposure will tantamount to losing her job and this is the main reason why dancers are hesitant to reveal the truth because it will mean the death of their careers as renowned ballerinas.
To camouflage this controversy, other dancers accuse Garritano of being a publicity seeker and that her revelation is concocted to malign the academy.