Frame Dance Productions Music Composition Competition

Frame Dance and Composers

Dear Composers,

Thank you for your submissions!  We are overwhelmed by the scores that have been submitted.  Due to the large number of applicants, we will need an extra week to finish our selection process.  You can expect an answer by February 7, 2014.

Thank you for your patience.  Your work inspires us.

With great respect and as always, to art,

Lydia Hance and the #framers


photo by Simon Gentry

Free Events Thursday

Free Events Thursday

Movie Screening: Ballerina

Friday, January 31, 2014 at  7:30 pm

2337 Bissonnet, Houston, TX 77005

Director: Bertrand Normand In the grand tradition of the Ballets Russes comes a portrait of five Russian ballerinas from the Mariinsky Theatre. Behind any great ballerina lies the discipline and rigor that comes from decades of training and practice. The five dancers profiled in this revealing film are tough, insightful and exceptionally talented; onstage they reveal no hint of the sweat, pain and hard work of the rehearsal studio. With Ulyana Lopatkina, Diana Vishneva, Evgenia Obraztsova, Alina Somova and Svetlana Zakharova. Language: English Duration: 77 minutes.

Price: Tickets: $8/$6 – RCC members Please buy tickets in advance as seating is limited.


Watch Auntie Mame Outdoors

Friday, January 31 at 6:30 pm

It’s the last free winter movie at Discovery Green! The movie will be facing towards the ICE rink. Feel free to bring blankets or chairs to view from The Lake House deck or White Promenade. Located at 1500 McKinney downtown.

Price: Free!!!


Celebrate Mardi Gras Style 

Saturday, February 1 at 10 am-10 pm

It’s Houston’s first Mardi Gras Parade and Festival! The Houston Creole Heritage Festival kicks off with a parade at 8 am beginning at Bell St. and Chenevert and ending at Discovery Green. The free festival, from 10 am – 10 pm, features live music, carnival and festival games, Kids’ Zone, Educational Fair, arts and crafts, and more. Get details about free kids’ bike helmet distribution at this event in my previous post. The nonprofit Houston S.H.O.P. (Sweet Hour of Prayer) Ministries is sponsoring this event, which raises funds to provide academic scholarships and school supplies.

Price: Free!!!


Support Local Artists 

Saturday, February 1 at 11 am-6 pm

The First Saturday Arts Market returns! This monthly outdoor market in the Heights features original art, music, and fun. Musical entertainment provided by Renise Dichards and the Wild Things plus Alex, Wendy and Alexis. Located at 548 W. 19th on the Wind Water Gallery parking lot. – See more at:


Art Tour at Asia Society

Saturday, February 1 at 2:00 pm – 3:00 pm

Docent-led tours of Asia Society Texas Center’s exhibitions allow visitors to experience art on a personal level, learn about art historical periods and styles, and hear stories associated with the artwork. Between History and New Horizons: Photographs of Women, Work And Community in Laos For most of the over 100 distinct ethnic groups found in the Lao People’s Democratic Republic, textile making has long been considered the domain of women. What constitutes women’s labor in a rapidly changing economy and how do women depict their roles in it? Consisting of professional portraits as well as personal photographs, Between History and New Horizons provides an all-too-infrequent glimpse of contemporary Laos, the perspectives of ethnic women, and the transformation of traditional skills into modern livelihoods.

Price: $5


Lunar NewYear Festival

Saturday, February 01, 2014 at 10 am- 4 pm

9800 Town Park Drive, Houston, TX 77036

Every year the Chinese Community Center hosts the premier event in Southwest Houston, the Lunar New Year Festival. The Lunar New Year Festival is a market place of family fun, Chinese cultural awareness, community outreach, and business promotion. The festival is a multi-cultural Asian celebration showcasing East and West and the diversity of the City of Houston.

With the support of local artists and performing groups, teach celebration attracts over 15,000 local and out-of-town visitors. Supported in part by the Houston Arts Alliance, the festival will be held on Saturday, February 1, 2014 celebrating the Year of the Horse. Starting at 10am and lasting for 6 exciting hours, the indoor auditorium and large outdoor park-like spaces at the Chinese Community Center host an array of riveting, beautiful, and inspiring performances to welcome the Lunar New Year.

Price: Free!!!


Houston Chinese New Years-30 Year Tradition-30 Persons Dragon Dance Team

Friday, January 31, 2014 and Saturday, February 1, 2014

2407 Westheimer, Houston, TX 77098

Shanghai River Restaurant will celebrate its 30 year tradition of Chinese New Years “The Year of the Horse – 4712” with a gala, fun-filled two day celebration Friday, January 31, 2014 and Saturday, February 1, 2014. The celebration will include an exciting 30 persons Dragon Dance Team at 8:15 PM each evening.

Authentic Chinese calligraphy, a good luck Chinese New Year’s menu, and drinks will add to the festivities. (Dinner will be served each evening from 5:00 PM till 11:00 PM., and diners can select either the CNY menu or the regular menu.) Walk-ins are welcome, but reservations are preferred by calling Shanghai River at (713) 528-5528.

Price: Free!!!


The Age of Impressionism: Great French Paintings from the Sterling and Francine Clark Art Institute

From: December 22, 2013 – March 23, 2014 (Recurring daily)

1001 Bissonnet, Houston, TX 77005

The acclaimed international tour of The Age of Impressionism: Great French Paintings from the Sterling and Francine Clark Art Institute concludes in Houston at the MFAH. Showcasing the Clark’s renowned holdings of French Impressionist painting, this exhibition features 73 works of art by a stellar lineup that includes Edgar Degas, Édouard Manet, Claude Monet, Berthe Morisot, Camille Pissarro, Pierre-Auguste Renoir, and Alfred Sisley. Also represented are Pierre Bonnard, William-Adolphe Bouguereau, Jean-Baptiste-Camille Corot, Jean-Léon Gérôme, Jean-François Millet, and Henri de Toulouse-Lautrec.

The Clark launched the collection tour in 2011 at the Palazzo Reale in Milan, coinciding with a three-year expansion of the Clark’s Williamstown, Massachusetts, facility. The MFAH is only the second, and the final, U.S. museum to host the exhibition.

This spectacular presentation tells not only the story of Sterling and Francine Clark’s devotion and passion for collecting but also of painting in 19th-century France, from the Orientalist works of Gérôme; to the Barbizon paintings of Corot and Théodore Rousseau; to the Impressionist masterpieces of Degas, Manet, Monet, Pissarro, Renoir, and Sisley; and concluding with the Early Modern output of Bonnard and Lautrec. Portraits, landscapes, marines, still lifes, and scenes of everyday life by 25 artists, spanning 70 years, are all on view.

Price: Free on Thursdays and for members; $23 (Sat. & Sun.) | $20 (weekdays)

Eat Well Wednesday

Eat Well Wednesday









 Creamy Salad dressings don’t have to be full of saturated, trans fat, and bad for you. 

Sure Kraft Ranch dressing is creamy and pretty yummy when dipping chicken fingers or dressing your salad. 

However, it is full of trans fat, chemicals, artificial coloring and preservatives.


Homemade Creamy Chipotle Salad Dressing!




    • 2/3 cups Plain Greek yogurt
    • 1/3 cup Cilantro, finely chopped
    • 1 teaspoon Ground cumin
    • 1 teaspoon Chili powder
    • 4 teaspoons Lime juice
    • 1/4 teaspoon Garlic powder
    • 1/4 teaspoon Salt


Step 1
Add all ingredients into a bowl and mix well.
Step 2 
Wash and chop romaine lettuce, add chopped onion, and tomatoes.
Step 3
Pour dressing over salad and toss well.Top with grilled chicken and sliced avocado for a yummy, well-balanced meal.


This is a wonderful alternative to mayo and sour cream based dressing and because the Greek yogurt is fully packed with protein.

There are endless possibilities for this dressing! Change-up the flavoring by adding some dill and onion powder or a great veggie dip.  Put a dollop on a baked sweet potato for a creamy substitute to sour cream and butter, or make a savory spread with chives and onion powder to spread over a whole wheat bagel.

Enjoy the possibilities and Be Well 🙂


HeadshotJill Tarpey is leading us Wednesday by Wednesday into making better food choices and being more healthful. Tune in every Wednesday to get some great recipes and advice from someone who really knows health. In an effort to fuel her passion to serve as well has enhance the lives of others through their nutritional choices, she started Eat Well SA(San Antonio). Her vision is to educate you on how to incorporate a healthy array of foods into your life. Eat Well is not a diet, nor does it embrace any one specific dietary agenda. She also offers customized programs that are educational and teach you the tools you need to maintain healthy, well-balanced eating for your busy lives.

Tuesday Tunes

Tuesday Tunes

Tuesday Tunes

               Happy Tuesday Framers!

             I hope all of you stay warm today!   

              Bebe Neuwirth!




In a really well-written musical, you talk until you just can’t talk anymore, you’re going to have to sing. And when you’re just so full you can’t sing anymore, then you have to dance. It’s a natural progression.


Beatrice “Bebe” Neuwirth was born in Princeton, New Jersey, the daughter of Sydney Anne, a painter, and Lee Paul Neuwirth, a mathematician. She has an older brother Peter, an actuary. Neuwirth is Jewish, and attended Chapin School in New Jersey as well as Princeton Day School (New Jersey) of Princeton, but graduated from Princeton High School (a public school) in 1976. She began to study ballet at the age of five, and chose it as her field of concentration when she attended Juilliard in New York City in 1976 and 1977, during which time she performed with the Princeton Ballet Company in Peter and the Wolf, The Nutcracker, and Coppélia, also appearing in community theater musicals. Neuwirth always dreamed of becoming a ballet dancer; the only other career she reportedly seriously contemplated was being a veterinarian.

Neuwirth made her Broadway debut in the role of Sheila in A Chorus Line in 1980. She later appeared in revivals of Little Me (1982) Sweet Charity (1986), for which she won the Tony Award for Best Featured Actress in a Musical, and Damn Yankees (1994). 1996 saw her play Velma Kelly in the Broadway revival of Chicago. That role brought her her greatest stage recognition to date, and several awards including the Tony Award, Drama Desk Award and Outer Critics Circle Award for Best Leading Actress in a Musical. Neuwirth would later return to the still-running revival of Chicago in 2006, this time as Roxie Hart.

She appeared in a musical revue Here Lies Jenny, that featured songs by Kurt Weill, sung and danced by Neuwirth and a four-person supporting cast, as part of an unspoken ambiguous story in an anonymous seedy bar possibly in Berlin in the 1930s. The show ran from May 7 through October 3, 2004, in the Zipper Theater in New York City. Here Lies Jenny was also presented by Neuwirth in San Francisco in 2005. In 2009, Neuwirth toured a one-woman cabaret show with pianist Scott Cady. The cabaret included music by Kurt Weill, Stephen Sondheim, Tom Waits, John Lennon, Paul McCartney, John Kander and Fred Ebb amongst others. In 2010, she returned to Broadway to create the role of Morticia Addams in the original production of The Addams Family opposite Nathan Lane.

Her screen credits include Green Card, Bugsy, Say Anything…, Jumanji, All Dogs Go to Heaven 2, Extreme Goofy Movie, Liberty Heights, Tadpole (for which the Seattle Film Critics named her Best Supporting Actress), How to Lose a Guy in 10 Days, La Divorce, Malice, The Big Bounce, The Faculty, Fame and Woody Allen’s Celebrity.

On television, from 1986 to 1993 Neuwirth played Dr. Lilith Sternin, who married Dr. Frasier Crane in the hit comedy series Cheers. From the fourth to the seventh season, Neuwirth portrayed Lilith in a regular recurring role, and she appeared on the show as a main star from season eight to the final season, season eleven. Like Kelsey Grammer when he started on the show as Frasier Crane, she was not immediately given star billing in the opening credits, but at the end for seasons eight and nine; she appeared in the opening credits with her own portrait in seasons ten and eleven. She auditioned for this role with her arm in a sling, following a fall a week earlier. She won two Emmy Awards for the role, in 1990 and 1991. The character also made an appearance in the series Wings and in 12 episodes of the Cheers spin-off Frasier, which earned her a 1995 Emmy Award nomination as Outstanding Guest Actress in a Comedy Series.

Other small-screen credits include a guest appearance in the first season of NewsRadio, a small role on The Adventures of Pete and Pete (episode: “The Call”), Deadline (2000), Hack (2003), Law & Order: Trial by Jury (2005), Law & Order: Special Victims Unit (1999 as a modeling agent/suspect; 2005 as A.D.A Tracey Kibre), and the miniseries Wild Palms and the fourth season Star Trek: The Next Generation episode, First Contact, as Lanel. She appeared as herself in episodes of Will and Grace, Strangers with Candy and Celebrity Jeopardy!. In 2009, she co-starred as Ms. Kraft in the remake of Fame. She recently had a recurring role as Caroline, the literary editor of Jonathan Ames, on the HBO series Bored to Death. She’s also appeared in shows like Blue Bloods, The Good Wife, and Sabrina the Teenage Witch as well as provided voice overs for various cartoons.



All That Jazz and Hot Honey Rag


I’m A Brass Band






Fun Facts about Miss Bebe Neuwirth


As of mid-January 2014, Bebe Neuwirth will have played all three of the principle female roles in the long-running Broadway Revival of Chicago. She was in the revival’s original cast as Velma Kelly, and won the 1997 Tony Award for Best Actress in a Musical. In 2007, Neuwirth did a stint as Roxie Hart, and in 2014, she returned to the show again, this time playing Warden “Mama” Morton.

Her husband, Chris Calkins is is the founder of Destino vineyards in Napa Valley.

After Cheers (1982) went off the air, she got a lot of offers from TV and film essentially asking her to pretty much play the same character. She was offered a regular role as Lilith on the Cheers (1982) spin-off, Frasier (1993) but she turned it down so she could go back to Broadway. She did guests spots on the show instead.

She raises money to help stray cats and dogs.

She had hip replacement surgery in 2006.

She has played the same character (Dr. Lilith Sternin) in three different series: Cheers(1982), Wings (1990) and Frasier (1993).

Has won two Tony Awards: in 1986 as Best Actress (Featured Role – Musical) for playing Nicki in a revival of “Sweet Charity;” and in 1997 as Best Actress (Musical) for playing Velma Kelly in a revival of “Chicago.”

MFA Monday

MFA Mondays

MFA right









The last installment of MFA Monday by Frame dancer Laura Gutierrez!

Laura was recently mentioned in the Top 25 Dancers to Watch in Dance Magazine!

Congratulations Laura!!!!

Check out her reflections on whether or not to attain a Master of Fine Arts!



I was talking to Brandon one night, and he told me about the moment when he knew he had made the right decision in returning to school to get his MFA. (I would tell you more, but I don’t want to blurt out someone else’s business!) I thought about this and realized I’m not ready to go back to a strict academic environment.  Although I do miss the daily grind of technique and composition classes– not to mention the secured performance opportunities– it’s crucial for an emerging dance professional to create his or her destiny.

Dodging MFA school set me full speed ahead on a course where I’m figuring out that in order to be an independent artist you have to become your own executive director, managing director, company manager, and agent.  Performing under choreographers, working at Hope Stone, Inc., teaching at HSPVA: this mishmash of practical experience might prove more valuable and just as important as going to grad school for Dance.

Last week I read Sydney Skybetter’s article and the following passage jumped out at me:

“The world you thought you were entering is long dead, and none of the old (anti-intellectual, super-sexist, super-classist and SUPER-racist) rules of dance history need hold true for you. So go forth. The search for new ways of moving, dancing and sustaining a career is ON.

The dance world today is not the same as the one I grew up hearing about and wanting to be a part of.  I’m just now at a point where I’ve learned I can mold my career the way I see fit.




headshotLaura Gutierrez is a graduate from the High School for the Performing and Visual Arts and received her BFA in contemporary dance from the University of North Carolina School of the Arts. A recipient of a 2009-2010 William R. Kenan, Jr. Performing Arts Fellowship at the Lincoln Center Institute, she presented her choreography The World Within in the Clark Theater. Since returning to Houston, she has been a part of Texas Weekend of Contemporary Dance, Big Range Dance Festival, Hope Stone, Inc’s emerging artist residency HopeWerks. She was also a part of Tino Sehgals installation in the Silence exhibit at The Menil Collection and most recently performed in Study for Ocupant choreographed by Jonah Boaker at Fabric Workshop Museum in Philadelphia and Frame Dance Productions. Currently she is on Adjunct Faculty at HSPVA and is the Office Manager/HopeWerks Director at Hope Stone, Inc.

Links We Like

Links We Like

Happy Friday Everyone!


Paper is not dead!


The Best Flash Mob EVER!


The star of Mission Impossible Five: Operation Nut Job



Best ways of describing life….

       Everything happens for a reason.



This is just AWESOME! 


Tasty Thursdays!


         Hey Framers!


This week we are switching it up a bit! This Thursday we are featuring a list of restaurants in the Houston area. If you are looking for a good place for a date night or if you’re new in town, try one of these places!



Peli Peli

110 Vintage Park Blvd. Suite P
Houston, TX 77070

How do we describe Peli Peli? In one word, FLAVOR! Peli Peli (also known as Piri Piri or Peri Peri), which means Bird’s-Eye Chili, is a spice that was discovered by the Portuguese in the 15th Century on the plains of Southern Africa. The spice rapidly became popular when used to prepare sauces and marinades for chicken and seafood cuisine. Peli Peli’s cuisine, known as South African Fusion, features authentic South African delicacies along with steak, chicken and seafood favorites that are prepared in Chef Paul Friedman’s South African style. This style includes marinades, seasonings and spices used in South African cuisine with Dutch, Portuguese and Asian influences. In addition to this amazing blend of innovative cuisine, guests entering Peli Peli will embark on a journey that will capture their heart, soul and belly and enjoy a culinary experience that they have never had before.

Find out more at

Recommendations:  Appetizers: The Bobotie ( Similar to an English Sheppard’s pie but way better)! Entree: Garlic Fillet, Huguenot Fillet, Cape Town Skillet for 1, Vegetarian Platter,Chilean Sea Bass. Sides: Mango Coleslaw, Roasted Red Potatoes, Sweet Potatoes and the African Rice Pilaf. Dessert: The Melktart (or as I call it- The Meerkat…it fits better).

Cyclone Anaya’s

1710 Durham Dr, Houston, TX 77007

Cyclone Anaya’s Mexican Kitchen serves world class Mexican food and drinks in an engaging, modern atmosphere, yet the experience is steeped in the family traditions established by our founder and namesake.  Some of the most popular items include: Lobster Enchiladas, Carolina’s Mixed Grill and bottomless mimosas from the weekend brunch menu. It’s not your typical Mexican restaurant!

Find out more at

Recommendations: Appetizer: Seafood Ceviche (add jumbo lump crabmeat),Jumbo Lump Crabmeat Nachos.  Entree: Lobster Enchiladas, Pollo Anaya, Pollo Jalisco, Soft Shell Crab Tacos, Slow Roasted Brisket Tacos, Fish Tacos, Sautéed Lobster Tacos, Crispy Shrimp Tacos. Dessert: Flan.


12808 Queensbury Lane
Suite 100
Houston, TX 77024

BRIO Tuscan Grille brings the pleasures of the Tuscan country villa to the American city. The Italians built their spacious country villas to escape the pressures of urban life and enjoy “La Dolce Vita” (the good life). The food at Brio is all simply prepared using the finest and freshest ingredients. The menu emphasis is on prime steaks and chops, homemade pasta specialties, and flatbreads prepared in an authentic Italian wood-burning oven.

Find out more at

Recommendations: Appetizers: Crab & Shrimp Fonduta, Tomato & Mozzarella Caprese. Entree: Ravioli Di Bello,Veal Milanese, Grilled Mahi Mahi, Lobster & Shrimp Fettuccine, Roasted Red Pepper Bruschetta. Dessert: Tiramisu, Chocolate Layer Cake (Dark and white mousse).

Cafe Pita



Superlative cevapcici is only the beginning at this modest mom and pop on the west side. What is cevapcici? Why, it’s the Bosnian national dish, a hamburger made to look like a hot dog and served with fluffy lepinja bread and ajvar. Beyond that, the menu offers Mediterranean/ Greek dishes such as earthy bean soup, a generous mezza plate of cured meats and pickled vegetables, lamb shank and interestingly enough, some popular pizza–all hearty fare that tastes as if mother made it (assuming mother is from Bosnia). Despite the slightly shabby appearance of the place, cornered in a typical strip mall, Café Pita+ is a food lover’s paradise—the offerings never fail to pique curiosity and are very well unique to this one restaurant in all of Houston.

Find out more at

Recommendations: Appetizers: Fried Cheese, Hummus, Feta Feta, Meza. Entree: Hadzijski Cevap (soup), Pljeskavice reg/stuf, Goulash, Burek Pita (cheese, spinach,beef, potato), Cevap Sandwich. Dessert: Baklava, Palacinci (Chocolate and hazelnut filled crepes,topped with strawberry and caramel sauce). 

Hobbit Cafe

2243 Richmond Ave
Houston, TX 77098

The Hobbit Cafe has been serving legendary food since January 1972. Over the years, the menu has evolved greatly, although many of the original items still remain very popular. For the first 6 years, the menu was vegetarian, with the addition of egg salad and cheese. Today’s menu is a combination of tasty seafood like fish tacos and blackened Tilapia, as well as chicken varieties, mexican dishes, angus beef and buffalo meat; our homemade soy patties and black bean patties also serve as excellent alternatives for burger substitutes. In addition, we have also added to the sandwich group with eclectic creations, while including more varieties in our salads; at the same time, our fresh fruit smoothies continued its popularity, and our daily different offering of vegetarian soup always kept our customers coming back for more. With a large wooden deck shaded by a giant oak tree, and with an ever-changing list of interestingly delightful “Hobbit-quality” beers and wines, it is always a place to relax and enjoy the Hobbit adventure.

Find out more at 

Recommendations: Appetizers: Black Bean Nachos, Jamaican Jerk Wings, Shrimp Rolls, Large Guacamole Salad. Entree: Thorin Oakenshield, Frodo, The Gandalf, The Strider, Smaug’s Delight, The Withy Windle, The Caribbean Jerk Salmon, The Blackened Tilapia, Gazpacho Soup, The Black Bean Burger. Dessert: Carrot Cake, Key Lime.


Eat Well Wednesday

Eat Well Wednesday








Looking for a delicious lunch recipe?


Whip up this Avocado Egg Salad and you have a yummy meal full of heart healthy fats from the avocado and protein from the egg. And with only 4 ingredients, it is easy to prepare and budget friendly too!


Avocado Egg Salad



  • 6 Hard Boiled Eggs
  • 1/2 Medium Avocado
  • 2 tablespoons 0% Greek Yogurt
  • Salt and Pepper



Step 1  Hard boil 6 eggs, let cool and peel.
Step 2  In a bowl, add 3 whole hardboiled eggs and 3 eggs whites.Cut eggs into small pieces
Step 3  Add greek yogurt, avocado, salt and pepper and mix well
Step 4  Serve in a 100% whole grain tortilla, wrap or on top of a bed of greens



Enjoy and Be Well!




0-1Jill Tarpey is leading us Wednesday by Wednesday into making better food choices and being more healthful. Tune in every Wednesday to get some great recipes and advice from someone who really knows health. In an effort to fuel her passion to serve as well has enhance the lives of others through their nutritional choices, she started Eat Well SA(San Antonio). Her vision is to educate you on how to incorporate a healthy array of foods into your life. Eat Well is not a diet, nor does it embrace any one specific dietary agenda. She also offers customized programs that are educational and teach you the tools you need to maintain healthy, well balanced eating for your busy lives.

Tuesday Tunes

Tuesday Tunes

Tuesday Tunes


          Hello, Hello!

  This Tuesday we are spotlighting… 


              Mikhail Baryshnikov! 


No one is born a dancer.You have to want it more than anything.

Baryshnikov was born in Riga, Latvia, then occupied and annexed by the Soviet Union. His parents were Russian, Alexandra (a dressmaker; maiden name, Kisselova) and Nicholai Baryshnikov (an engineer). Baryshnikov began his ballet studies in Riga in 1960. In 1964, he entered the Vaganova School, in what was then Leningrad (now St. Petersburg). Baryshnikov soon won the top prize in the junior division of the Varna International Ballet Competition. He joined the Kirov Ballet and Mariinsky Theater in 1967, dancing the “Peasant” pas de deux in Giselle.

Recognizing Baryshnikov’s talent, in particular the strength of his stage presence and purity of his classical technique, several Soviet choreographers, including Oleg Vinogradov, Konstantin Sergeyev, Igor Tchernichov, and Leonid Jakobson, choreographed ballets for him. Baryshnikov made signature roles of Jakobson’s 1969 Vestris along with an intensely emotional Albrecht in Giselle. While still in the Soviet Union, he was called by New York Times critic Clive Barnes “the most perfect dancer I have ever seen.”

On June 29, 1974, while on tour in Canada with the Kirov Ballet, Baryshnikov defected, requesting political asylum in Toronto, and joined the Royal Winnipeg Ballet. He also announced to the dance world he would not go back to the U.S.S.R. He later stated that Christina Berlin, an American friend of his, helped engineer his defection during his 1970 tour of London. His first televised performance after coming out of temporary seclusion in Canada was with the National Ballet of Canada in La Sylphide. He then went on to the United States.

From 1974 to 1978, he was principal dancer with the American Ballet Theatre (ABT), where he partnered with Gelsey Kirkland. He also worked with the New York City Ballet, with George Balanchine and as a regular guest artist with the Royal Ballet. He also toured with ballet and modern dance companies around the world for fifteen months. Several roles were created for him, including roles Opus 19: The Dreamer (1979), by Jerome Robbins, Rhapsody (1980), by Frederick Ashton, and Other Dances with Natalia Makarova by Jerome Robbins.

He returned to ABT in 1980 as dancer and artistic director, a position he held for a decade. On July 3, 1986, he became a naturalized citizen of the United States. From 1990 to 2002, Baryshnikov was artistic director of the White Oak Dance Project, a touring company he co-founded with Mark Morris. In 2003, he won the Prix Benois de la Danse for lifetime achievement. In 2005 he launched the Baryshnikov Arts Center in New York.

Baryshnikov made his American television dancing debut in 1976, on the PBS program In Performance Live from Wolf Trap. During the Christmas season of 1977, CBS brought his highly acclaimed American Ballet Theatre production of Tchaikovsky’s classic ballet The Nutcracker to television, and it has remained to this day the most popular and most often shown television production of the work, at least in the U.S. In addition to Baryshnikov in the title role, Gelsey Kirkland, Alexander Minz, and many members of the American Ballet Theatre also starred. The production is still shown by some PBS stations.  The Baryshnikov version of The Nutcracker is one of only two to be nominated for an Emmy Award. The other one was Mark Morris’ The Hard Nut, Morris’s intentionally exaggerated and satirical version of the ballet.

Baryshnikov also performed in two Emmy-winning television specials, one on ABC and one on CBS, in which he danced to music from Broadway and Hollywood, respectively. During the 1970’s and 1980’s, he appeared many times with American Ballet Theatre on Live from Lincoln Center and Great Performances. Over the years, he has also appeared on several telecasts of the Kennedy Center Honors.

Baryshnikov performed in his first film role soon after arriving in New York. He portrayed the character Yuri Kopeikine, a famous Russian womanizing ballet dancer, in the 1977 film The Turning Point, for which he received an Oscar nomination. He co-starred with Gregory Hines and Isabella Rossellini in the 1985 film White Nights, choreographed by Twyla Tharp; and he was featured in the 1987 film Dancers. On television, in the last season of Sex and the City, he played a Russian artist, Aleksandr Petrovsky, who woos Carrie Bradshaw relentlessly and takes her to Paris. He co-starred in Company Business (1991) with Gene Hackman.

On November 2, 2006, Baryshnikov and chef Alice Waters were featured on an episode of the Sundance Channel’s original series Iconoclasts. The two have a long friendship. They discussed their lifestyles, sources of inspiration, and social projects that make them unique. During the program, Alice Waters visited Baryshnikov’s Arts Center in New York City. The Hell’s Kitchen Dance tour brought him to Berkeley to visit Alice Waters’ restaurant Chez Panisse.

On July 17, 2007, the PBS News Hour with Jim Lehrer featured a profile of Baryshnikov and his Arts Center.

On April 11–21, 2012, Baryshnikov starred in a new play directed by Dmitry Krymov, titled In Paris. The play was presented in the Santa Monica College Performing Arts Center, at the Broad Stage. His co-star was Anna Sinyakina.

His next role was the stage adaptation of Anton Chekhov’s Man in a Case.


Duo Dance from White Nights with Gregory Hines



Albrechts’ variation from Act II of Giselle in 1977.



Mikhail Baryshnikov in White Nights, dancing “Koni” (Horses) by Vysotsky (KGB spy and killer).



Fun Facts about Mr. Mikhail Baryshnikov


Danced with the Kirov Ballet, the American Ballet Theatre and the New York City Ballet.

Was artistic director with ABT and even ran his own class outside of ABT – Mikhail Baryshnikov’s School of Classic Ballet.

Was romantically involved with legendary ballerinas Natalia Makarova and Gelsey Kirkland.

Frequently attended legendary New York disco Studio 54.

Was nominated for Broadway’s 1989 Tony Award as Best Actor (Play) for “Metamorphosis.”

Owner of ballet troupe, “White Oak Dance Project”.

Taught by ballet instructor Bella Kovarsky when he was a child.

Mikhail was a 2000 recipient of the John F. Kennedy Center Honors.