​Sergei Filin's undimmed vision for the Bolshoi

For more than 200 years Russia's famed Bolshoi Ballet has been mesmerizing audiences around the world

It's been more than two years since behind-the-curtain intrigue at Russia's Bolshoi Ballet escalated into violence. In that time the victim has come a long way toward healing. The story now from Tracy Smith:

In Russian "Bolshoi" means big -- and in the world of classical ballet, few are bigger than this.

For as long as the United States has been a country, the Bolshoi has been dancing. Founded in 1776, the Moscow-based company has been a crown jewel of Russia, mesmerizing audiences with tales of passion and betrayal, mostly on stage ...

Until one snowy night two winters ago.

Sergei Filin following the acid attack. CBS News

On January 17, 2013, Bolshoi artistic director Sergei Filin was viciously attacked -- doused with acid outside his Moscow home. It left Filin severely burned, and almost completely blind.

And it left the ballet world stunned.

"I was so shocked," said Lynn Garafola, who heads the dance program at Barnard College in New York. "I mean, this is the kind of thing that you hear about with the Mafia in the 1950s, how they liquidated their enemies or something like that. I could not believe that it had happened at the Bolshoi."

What's more, the attack was ordered by one of the Bolshoi's own: A dancer named Pavel Dmitrichenko, angry that he and his ballerina girlfriend didn't get better roles.

That resentment, Garafola says, isn't surprising.

"It's an enormously competitive environment," she said. "Here you are, a company of over 200 people. There are only a finite number of roles. Everyone wants to be the Swan Queen, and not everyone is going to be the Swan Queen."

For his role in the attack, Dmitrichenko is now serving six years in prison. And after nearly two years of treatment, Sergei Filin is still at the helm of the Bolshoi.

We met Filin this past summer, in the middle of the Bolshoi's two-week tour in New York -- their first visit in nearly a decade.

Filin is still undergoing medical treatment; he's had 30 surgeries so far on his eyes.

The Bolshoi Ballet's artistic director, Sergei Filin. CBS News

Filin is more comfortable speaking through an interpreter. And while he's not so comfortable talking about the attack, he can remember every detail of what happened.

"Speaking about that night, it was far too horrifying for me, for my family, for those who surround me," he said.

"You must have been terrified of losing your eyesight," said Smith.