Reverence: The Maverick Star

You are a choreographer as well as a dancer. What drew you to hip hop for Les Rares Différences, the piece you made for the 2007 Festival of Dance in Suresnes?
My subject was Auguste Rodin. I needed bodies like sculptures—ballet dancers are too lean. Hip hop dancers have an absolutely statuesque upper body. I learned a lot from hip hop, too, especially from the movement dissociations.

What are you currently working on?
I’m putting together the first dance flash mob in France, for a charity. We will have professional dancers performing in a train station.

Who inspires you?
All of my colleagues. I pay a lot of attention to them, and I always find something that I would like to replicate. I love taking a little something from everyone.

Of which accomplishment are you the most proud?
I loved my first Don Quixotes and Swan Lakes. It was a consecration—I was already an étoile, even though I didn’t have the title. The audience and the orchestra were stamping. My dressing room was so filled with flowers I couldn’t sit.

What do you do on your days off?
I sleep, and I go to the theater. I also paint—it’s  a good way to let go of everything.

What’s your specialty in the kitchen?
Turkey escalopes with potatoes, mushrooms and cream. I am something of a gourmet, and I eat a lot!

What skill would you most like to have?
To control the weather, so that I can take care of people.

Do you have any hidden talents?

I am keen on embroidery. It allows me to stop thinking, to focus on something else. I just think too much.

What advice do you have for students hoping to become professional dancers?

Watch those around you. That’s how I made it—by listening and watching more than everybody else.

To whom do you attribute your success?
To myself. To my determination.

How would you like to be remembered?
I think people will remember me in any case, because everything about me is so extreme. I’ve already made dance history in France.

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Congratulations to this year's graduating seniors!

You might not have had the chance to take that long planned-for final bow, but we're here to cheer you on and celebrate all that you've accomplished. And we've brought together stars from across the ballet world to help us; check out the video to hear their best wishes for your futures.

To further fête all of the ballet grads out there, we're also giving away 100 free subscriptions to Pointe... plus, one lucky bunhead will receive a personalized message from one of ballet's biggest stars. Click here to enter!


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Updated: Mark Your Calendars for These Online Ballet Performances

Updated on 5/27/2020

Since COVID-19 has forced ballet companies around the world to cancel performances—and even the remainder of their seasons—many are keeping their audiences engaged by streaming or posting pre-recorded performances onto their websites or social media channels. To help keep you inspired during these challenging times, we've put together a list of upcoming streaming events and digital performances.

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