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Anna Bessonova
Son Yeon-Jae at LG WHISEN Rhythmic All Stars 2011 (38).jpg
Bessonova at the 2011 LG WHISEN Rhythmic All Stars Gala
Personal information
Full name Ganna Volodymyrivna Bessonova
Nickname(s) Anya, Bess
Country represented  Ukraine
Born (1984-07-29) 29 July 1984 (age 39)
Kyiv, Ukrainian SSR, Soviet Union
Hometown Kyiv
Height 174 cm (5 ft 9 in)
Weight 49 kg (108 lb)
Discipline Rhythmic gymnastics
Club Deriugins School
Head coach(es) Albina Deriugina
Assistant coach(es) Iryna Deriugina
Choreographer Iryna Grischenko
Retired 2010
Medal record
International gymnastics competitions
Event 1st 2nd 3rd
Olympic Games 0 0 2
World Championships 5 15 7
European Championships 3 12 9
European Team Championships 0 2 0
World Cup Final 3 4 3
Grand Prix Final 5 7 6
World Games 1 4 1
Summer Universiade 10 8 1
Total 27 52 29
Rhythmic gymnastics
Representing  Ukraine
Olympic Games
Olympic rings.svg
Bronze 2004 Athens All-around
Bronze 2008 Beijing All-around
World Championships
Gold 2001 Madrid Team
Gold 2002 New Orleans 5 ribbons
Gold 2003 Budapest Hoop
Gold 2003 Budapest Clubs
Gold 2007 Patras All-around
Silver 2001 Madrid Hoop
Silver 2001 Madrid Ball
Silver 2003 Budapest All-around
Silver 2003 Budapest Ball
Silver 2003 Budapest Ribbon
Silver 2003 Budapest Team
Silver 2005 Baku Team
Silver 2005 Baku All-around
Silver 2005 Baku Rope
Silver 2005 Baku Ball
Silver 2005 Baku Clubs
Silver 2005 Baku Ribbon
Silver 2007 Patras Clubs
Silver 2007 Patras Ribbon
Silver 2009 Mie Ribbon
Bronze 1999 Osaka Team
Bronze 2001 Madrid All-around
Bronze 2001 Madrid Rope
Bronze 2007 Patras Hoop
Bronze 2009 Mie All-around
Bronze 2009 Mie Rope
Bronze 2009 Mie Ball
European Championships
Gold 2003 Riesa Ribbon
Gold 2003 Riesa Hoop
Gold 2003 Riesa Clubs
Silver 2002 Granada Team
Silver 2003 Riesa Ball
Silver 2004 Kyiv All-around
Silver 2004 Kyiv Team
Silver 2005 Moscow Ball
Silver 2005 Moscow Ribbon
Silver 2005 Moscow Team
Silver 2007 Baku Hoop
Silver 2007 Baku Ribbon
Silver 2007 Baku Team
Silver 2008 Torino All-around
Silver 2009 Baku Ball
Bronze 2002 Granada All-around
Bronze 2005 Moscow Rope
Bronze 2005 Moscow Clubs
Bronze 2006 Moscow All-around
Bronze 2007 Baku Clubs
Bronze 2009 Baku Rope
Bronze 2009 Baku Hoop
Bronze 2009 Baku Ribbon
Bronze 2009 Baku Team
European Team Championships
Silver 2001 Riesa Team
Silver 2003 Moscow Team
World Cup Final
Gold 2002 Stuttgart Rope
Gold 2002 Stuttgart Hoop
Gold 2002 Stuttgart Clubs
Silver 2002 Stuttgart Ball
Silver 2008 Benidorm Hoop
Silver 2008 Benidorm Clubs
Silver 2008 Benidorm Ribbon
Bronze 2006 Mie Rope
Bronze 2006 Mie Ball
Bronze 2006 Mie Ribbon
Grand Prix Final
Gold 2003 Innsbruck All-around
Gold 2003 Innsbruck Ribbon
Gold 2003 Innsbruck Hoop
Gold 2004 Deventer Hoop
Gold 2004 Deventer Clubs
Silver 2002 Innsbruck All-around
Silver 2002 Innsbruck Ball
Silver 2003 Innsbruck Clubs
Silver 2003 Innsbruck Ball
Silver 2004 Deventer Ribbon
Silver 2005 Berlin All-around
Silver 2006 Berlin Ball
Bronze 2000 Deventer Hoop
Bronze 2002 Innsbruck Clubs
Bronze 2002 Innsbruck Hoop
Bronze 2004 Deventer All-around
Bronze 2004 Deventer Ball
Bronze 2005 Berlin Ribbon
World Games
Gold 2005 Duisburg Rope
Silver 2005 Duisburg Ball
Silver 2009 Kaohsiung Rope
Silver 2009 Kaohsiung Ball
Silver 2009 Kaohsiung Ribbon
Bronze 2005 Duisburg Ribbon
Summer Universiade
Gold 2003 Daegu Ribbon
Gold 2005 Izmir All-around
Gold 2005 Izmir Rope
Gold 2005 Izmir Ball
Gold 2005 Izmir Clubs
Gold 2007 Bangkok All-around
Gold 2007 Bangkok Rope
Gold 2007 Bangkok Hoop
Gold 2007 Bangkok Clubs
Gold 2007 Bangkok Ribbon
Silver 2003 Daegu All-around
Silver 2003 Daegu Hoop
Silver 2003 Daegu Ball
Silver 2003 Daegu Clubs
Silver 2009 Belgrade All-around
Silver 2009 Belgrade Rope
Silver 2009 Belgrade Ball
Silver 2009 Belgrade Ribbon
Bronze 2005 Izmir Ribbon

Ganna Volodymyrivna Bessonova (Ukrainian: Ганна Володимирівна Безсонова/Ganna Volodymyrivna Bessonova; born 29 July 1984) is a Ukrainian former individual rhythmic gymnast. She is one of the most decorated rhythmic gymnast of her generation. She is a two-time Olympic bronze medalist (2004 and 2008); a five-time medalist in the all-around competition of the World Championships: gold in 2007, silver in 2003 and 2005, bronze in 2001 and 2009; a four-time medalist in the all-around competition of the European Championships: silver in 2004 and 2008, bronze in 2002 and 2006; and a four-time medalist in the all-around competition of the Grand Prix Final: gold in 2003, silver in 2002 and 2005, bronze in 2004.

Personal life

Bessonova's father is the Dynamo Kyiv football player Vladimir Bessonov. Her mother, Viktoria, is a former two-time World champion group rhythmic gymnast. She is the one that introduced her daughter to the sport.

After retiring, Bessonova coached girls at the Deriugins School. Her students include Yeva Meleshchuk.

Bessonova moved to the United States in 2017 and coaches girls in Florida.


Anna Bessonova 2001 Madrid
Bessonova at the 2001 World Championships

Bessonova began training in rhythmic gymnastics at age five. Her mother preferred to see her daughter on the ballet stage; however, Bessonova decided on rhythmic gymnastics. She was coached by Albina Deriugina and her daughter Irina Deriugina at the Deriugins School in Kyiv. She is 1.74m (5'9").

In 1999, Bessonova was the youngest in the Ukrainian team during the 1999 World Championship in Osaka, Japan, yet she made such a good impression that the RG specialists wrote her name immediately as a future top gymnast. In the 2001 World Championships, Alina Kabaeva and her teammate Irina Tchachina who originally won gold and silver medal in all-around respectively tested positive to a banned diuretic (furosemide) and were stripped of their medals. Ukraine's Tamara Yerofeeva who originally won bronze was awarded the gold with Bulgaria's Simona Peycheva from 4th to taking the silver and Bessonova from 5th was awarded the bronze medal.

In 2002, Bessonova tested positive for norephedrine, a banned stimulant in March during a competition in Disneyland Paris Stadium by France and was banned for two months. Bessonova briefly competed as member of the Ukrainian Group. She and the Ukrainian Group won the gold medal in five Ribbons in New Orleans. She dominated the 2002 World Cup Final in Stuttgart in November, by winning the first place on the hoop, the rope and the clubs. After that Bessonova (aged 18) became a leader of the Ukrainian national team.

In 2003 in Budapest she won two World titles — the hoop event final edging out Alina Kabaeva (performing to music from Swan Lake) and the clubs final where she beat Irina Tchachina for the gold. Bessonova was very close to the all-around title but finished with the silver medal behind Russia's Alina Kabaeva after a drop during her ball routine. In 2003, she won three European gold medals — in hoop, clubs and ribbon event finals. She won three of four finals in the 2003 Grand Prix tournament in Kyiv.

In 2004, Bessonova won the all-around silver medal at the 2004 European Championships. She made her Olympic debut and won the bronze individual all-around medals at the 2004 Athens Olympics with a total score of 106.700 (ribbon 26.725, clubs 26.950, ball 26.525, hoop 26.500) behind two Russians, silver medalist Irina Tchachina and gold medalist Alina Kabaeva.

In 2005, Bessonova became a six-time silver medalist during 2005 World Championships in all-around, rope, ball, clubs and ribbon finals. She took four gold medals at the 2005 Universiade in Izmir, winning the all-around, rope, ball and clubs. She won the all-around bronze at the 2006 European Championships.

Bessonova at the 2008 World Cup Final

In 2007, Bessonova competed in a number of Grand Prix and World Cup Series. The year would also mark the start of a new challenge for Bessonova with rise of new Russian gymnast Evgenia Kanaeva. At the 2007 Corbeil-Essonnes World Cup, she won the silver medal behind Evgenia Kanaeva. She won all the gold medals in 2007 Summer Universiade beating Sessina and Kapranova. She became World champion at the 2007 World Championship in Patras, winning the all-around gold medal defeating Russians Vera Sessina and Olga Kapranova.

In 2008, Bessonova won all-around golds at the LA Lights, Deriugina Cup (Kyiv World Cup) and Miss Valentine Competitions, as well as the all-around silver at the European Championships in Torino behind Russian star Evgenia Kanaeva. At the 2008 World Cup events, Bessonova accumulated 15 medals. The year culminated in her all-around bronze medal at the 2008 Beijing Olympics with Kanaeva winning the gold medal and Belarus' Inna Zhukova taking the silver medal.

In 2009, Bessonova placed first in the all-around at the Kyiv World Cup and Deriugina Cup events, and also won bronze in the World and European Championships behind reigning Olympic champion Evgenia Kanaeva and Daria Kondakova. She competed at the 2009 Universiade in Belgrade and won four silver medals again behind Kanaeva. Bessonova finally completed her career in 2010 at the Deriugina Cup in Kyiv.

In 2013 Bessonova performed at the opening ceremony of the 2013 World Championships, in Kyiv, Ukraine.

Other professional and social activities

Son Yeon-Jae at LG WHISEN Rhythmic All Stars 2011 (106)
Bessonova at the 2011 LG WHISEN Rhythmic All Stars Gala

After completing her career in professional sports, Bessonova appeared in Ukrainian television projects. During the UEFA Euro 2012, she was a TV presenter, a commentator and a special correspondent in a Ukrainian sports TV channel. Back in 2009 Bessonova took part in «Dancing for You» TV show, becoming the winner (partnered with Olexander Leshchenko). After some time, she was a chief editor of Ukrainian edition of Pink magazine. Bessonova is also known as an active promoter of sports and healthy lifestyle among young people in Ukraine. She participated in numerous charity projects.

Routine music information

Anna Bessonova-UKR
Bessonova at the 2009 European Championships
Son Yeon-Jae at LG WHISEN Rhythmic All Stars 2011 (46)
Bessonova at the 2011 LG WHISEN Rhythmic All Stars Gala
Son Yeon-Jae at LG WHISEN Rhythmic All Stars 2011 (61)
Bessonova at the 2011 LG WHISEN Rhythmic All Stars Gala
Year Apparatus Music title
2009 Hoop Carrots/Shots / Struggle For Ebullience / Night Running / Earth Zoom In / Linda Looks For Love (Part 1) / Plan B
music from Burn After Reading by Carter Burwell
Rope Boat Chase / Chopper Chase / Face Off music from The Italian Job by John Powell
Ball Chapel / Filet / Red Men music from Le Rêve by Benoît Jutras
Ribbon Carmina Burana by Carl Orff
2008 Hoop music from Avrora by Valeri Tishler
Rope Shiro's Estate by Brian Tyler
Clubs Gladiator soundtrack – "Barbarian Horde"
Ribbon Hopak (Ukrainian Folk)
2007 Hoop music from Avrora by Valeri Tishler
Rope The Dance At The Gym music from West Side Story by Leonard Bernstein
Clubs Gladiator soundtrack – "Barbarian Horde"
Ribbon Boléro by Maurice Ravel
2006 Ball You Have A Special Purpose In Life / I'm Not Ready To Die / Renovatio music from The Island by Steve Jablonsky
Rope Conga Fury music from The Animatrix by Juno Reactor
Clubs Plaza of Execution / Leave No Witnesses / The Ride / The Fencing Lesson / The Mask of Zorro
music from The Mask of Zorro by James Horner
Ribbon Molto Meno Mosso (Act IV, no.28) / Moderato (Act III, no. 24) music from Swan Lake by Tchaikovsky
2005 Ball Miss San / Miko's Testimony / Song to Miko music from Wasabi by Éric Serra
Rope Finale from Carmen by G. Bizet, R. Shchedrin
Clubs Jesus Arrested / Mary Goes to Jesus / Jesus is Carried Down music from The Passion of the Christ by John Debney
Ribbon Fantasy – overture for orchestra in B minor from Romeo and Juliet by Tchaikovsky
2004 Hoop Molto Meno Mosso / Allegro – Valse – Allegro – Vivo / Finale – Andante – Allegro Agitatoo -
Alla Breve – Moderato e Maestoso – Moderato / Moderato by Tchaikovsky
Ball Spartacus by Aram Khachaturian
Clubs Mona Lisa Overdrive from The Matrix Reloaded by Don Davis and Juno Reactor
Ribbon Nyah / La Cavalera from Mission Impossible II by Hans Zimmer and Elliot Goldenthal
2003 Hoop Molto Meno Mosso / Allegro – Valse – Allegro – Vivo / Finale – Andante – Allegro Agitatoo -
Alla Breve – Moderato e Maestoso – Moderato / Moderato by Tchaikovsky
Ball Tennessee / Attack (from Pearl Harbor) by Hans Zimmer
Clubs Su-Chow Prison (from Spy Game by Harry Gregson-Williams
Ribbon Nyah / La Cavalera from Mission Impossible II by Hans Zimmer and Elliot Goldenthal
2002 Hoop Molto Meno Mosso / Allegro – Valse – Allegro – Vivo / Finale – Andante – Allegro Agitatoo -
Alla Breve – Moderato e Maestoso – Moderato / Moderato by Tchaikovsky
Rope Nyah music from Mission Impossible 2 by Hans Zimmer
Clubs The Word [PMT Remix] music from Swordfish by ... Smugglaz
Ball Tennessee / Attack (from Pearl Harbor) by Hans Zimmer
2001 Hoop Raid on Leonesse music from First Knight by Jerry Goldsmith
Rope Nyah music from Mission Impossible II by Hans Zimmer
Clubs Concierto Para Quinteto by Astor Piazzolla
Ball Barbarian Horde / To Zucchabar (from The Gladiator) by Hans Zimmer
2000 Hoop Act 1 and 2 (from Giselle) by Adolphe Adam
Rope Night Borders / Camel Race / Main Theme music from The Mummy by Jerry Goldsmith
Ball Toccata and Fugue in D Minor by Johann Sebastian Bach
Ribbon "Serpent Dream" by Mike Oldfield
1999 Hoop Nuestro Poema by Raul di Blasio
Rope Felicia music from Tango Forever by Luis Bravo
Ball  ?
Ribbon "Serpent Dream" by Mike Oldfield
1998 Hoop  ?
Clubs  ?
Ball "Gory, gory, moya zvezda" (Ukrainian traditional)
Ribbon Private Investigations by Dire Straits

Detailed Olympic results

Year Competition Description Location Music Apparatus Score-Final Score-Qualifying
2008 Olympics Beijing All-around 71.875 72.825
Hopak (Ukrainian Folk) Ribbon 18.225 18.325
Shiro's Estate by Brian Tyler Rope 17.975 17.950
Avrora by Valeri Tishler Hoop 17.775 18.450
Gladiator Soundtrack – Barbarian Horde Clubs 17.900 18.100
Year Competition Description Location Music Apparatus Score-Final Score-Qualifying
2004 Olympics Athens All-around 106.700 104.725
Nyah / La Cavalera from Mission Impossible II
by Hans Zimmer and Elliot Goldenthal
Ribbon 26.725 25.325
Spartacus by Aram Khachaturian Ball 26.525 26.750
Molto Meno Mosso
/ Allegro – Valse – Allegro – Vivo
/ Finale – Andante – Allegro Agitatoo -
Alla Breve – Moderato e Maestoso – Moderato
/ Moderato by Tchaikovsky
Hoop 26.500 25.900
Mona Lisa Overdrive from Matrix Reloaded
by Don Davis & Juno Reactor
Clubs 26.950 26.750


Bessonova's early years are described in the book National Olympic Committee of Ukraine for Rhythmic Gymnastics and Iryna Deriugina, Olexandra Tymoshenko, Olena Vitrychenko, Kateryna Serebryanska, Anna Bessonova (in Ukrainian) (Національний олімпійський комітет України про художню гімнастику та Ірину Дерюгіну, Олександру Тимошенко, Олену Вітриченко, Катерину Серебрянську, Анну Безсонову / текст: Григорія Палія та Олександра Мащенка; відповідальний редактор Олена Мовчан. — Київ : Грані-Т, 2010. — 112 с. — ISBN: 978-966-465-283-1).

Another story based on real events from Anna Bessonova's childhood is Absolute champion by Oles Ilchenko (in Ukrainian) (Ільченко, О. Абсолютний чемпіон / Олесь Ільченко. — Київ : Грані-Т, 2011. — 80 с. — ISBN: 978-966-465-349-4).

See also

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