As a world-renowned ballet dancer and choreographer, George Birkadze brings grace and power to the stage with every move.
The same can be said of his second pursuit: mixed martial arts. With black belts in Brazilian jiu-jitsu, judo and Kyokushin karate, Birkadze bridges the worlds of martial arts and ballet to prove that all dancers are fighters, and all fighters are dancers.
George is a world famous ballet dancer, instructor and choreographer. Martial arts helped him to survive tough teen years in Moscow where local bullies taunted him for being a dancer. Over the years this fighting hobby became something more—a life-long passion.
George grew up in Georgia, the country in the Caucasus Region, former part of the Soviet Union. As a youth George took ballet lessons because he wanted to travel the world. When George was 15 years old, he received an invitation to study at the prestigious Bolshoi Theatre in Moscow, Russia. In Moscow he was bullied and started training Judo and karate. It was around this time that he met and became friends with Feodor Emelianenko.
Here is George rolling with Jacare Souza a few years back: