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25 to watch.

Each new year, Dance Magazine readers with a tempting array of dance delectables: twenty-five dancers, companies, choreographers, or trends that we believe will make you sit up and take notice in the coming months. [] We're often asked how we select those who grace our pages each January. Choosing so few out of the myriad of talent that commands our attention daily is frustrating at best. We rely on dance writers and critics (no, not artistic directors and press agents) scattered around the globe to send us nominations, and from that group, we select twenty-five who represent the diversity of the dance community. Is the list inclusive? No. Is it subjective? You bet. But we promise that someone or something in this group will make you open your eyes, catch your breath, or wipe away tears. [] Here they are: 2003's 25 to Watch. It's a new year. Go see some dance.

BAHIYAH SAYYED-GAINES

High Drama

BY ROBERT TRACY

Bahiyah Sayyed-Gaines's fiery energy and passion keeps Alvin Ailey's spirit permeating the dance arena of the twenty-first century. After graduating from The Juilliard School, she went international, joining William Forsythe's Ballett Frankfurt, Donald Byrd/The Group, and Complexions before joining Alvin Ailey American Dance Theater in 1998. Under Artistic Director Judith Jamison's tutelage, she has soared through the Ailey repertoire.

Extremely well versed in ballet, Horton and Graham techniques, jazz, and ethnic dancing, Sayyed-Gaines's fierce dramatic sense can take you to the lowest abyss or to the heights of ecstasy. The idea of the dancer/actress has always appealed to the Ailey sensibility, and Sayyed-Gaines has even been compared to 1940s film actress Joan Crawford. "You have no idea what a positive compliment that was," she says. "I love her! I love high drama, which is why I feel blessed to be the tool through which the Ailey legacy is kept alive today."

www.alvinailey.org

Dance-history teacher Robert Tracy has written books on Balanchine, Graham, and Noguchi.

JERRY MITCHELL

Broadway's Hot Commodity

BY SYLVIANE GOLD

Jerry Mitchell is not exactly a new comer--he started performing in community theatre in Paw Paw, Michigan, when he was 8. In 1980, at 20, he came to New York to audition for Agnes de Mille, who hired him for the ensemble of Brigadoon. He's been working as a choreographer since 1992, but last summer, the resounding success of Hairspray moved him inarguably into the top tier of current Broadway choreographers. He says he learned "millions of secrets about how to do a good musical" assisting Michael Bennett and Jerome Robbins, and this year, those secrets will help shape a remarkable run of new shows: Imaginary Friends was to open in December 2002; Never Gonna Dance, based on the 1936 movie Swing Time, arrives in the spring; Gypsy, with Bernadette Peters, begins rehearsing this month. And of course, he'll be doing the thirteenth installment (tentatively scheduled for June 15) of Broadway Bares, the benefit show that lets it all hang out for charity.

DANCE MAGAZINE'S regular musical-theater writer, Sylviane Gold, has written about theater for the Boston Phoenix, The Wall Street Journal, Newsday, The New York Times, and other publications.

TAMIECA MCCLOUD

Native Dancer

By DARRAH CARR

Growing up in Newark, New Jersey, Tamieca McCloud trained with another girl of the same name at the School of the Garden State Ballet. The two later attended Rutgers University and double-majored in dance and literature. Nevertheless, McCloud, 30, has always made her individual mark. After three years of performing with Pilobolus Dance Theatre, she became restless, eager to explore varied interests, including music, native cultures, and text. The name of her company, Restless. Native. Dance., reflects her mind-set and indicates that her movement vocabulary is far from staid. McCloud explains, "The work is eclectic and jumps from style to style. My range is anywhere from balletic to something you'd see in a club." Her collaborations with poet and performer Kimabe add to the mix, while strong female characters provide another inspiration. The company's first season in June of 2002, "Angels and Amazons," was influenced by images of women as both nurturing healers and fierce warriors. www.restlessnative.org

Darrah Carr is a New York City-based writer, choreographer, and teacher, active in both the Irish- and modern-dance communities.

TARYN KASCHOCK

Kaschock's Crossing

BY HEDY WEISS

Something blossomed in Taryn Kaschock during the past year, and it was visible both onstage and in the dramatic career shift she made in late spring 2002.

With the Joffrey Ballet since 1995, Kaschock--a tiny, rail-thin dancer with intense focus and visible intelligence--attracts attention for her crisp, unsentimental performances. She was terrific as the Bride in Appalachian Spring and revealed her comic flair as The Cowgirl in Rodeo. She was riveting in Strange Prisoners, a modern piece that showcased her affinity for contemporary work.

It was not altogether surprising then, that at the end of the Joffrey's season Kaschock announced she was "crossing the street" to join Hubbard Street Dance Chicago.

"I always wanted my career to embrace both ballet and modern dance, and I had begun to fall in love with Hubbard Street's repertoire" explained Kaschock.

Now 25, the dancer has fought against scoliosis since age 11. "It is such a gift to be able to dance," she said. "In a way, fighting my back problem has been the fuel that has fired me." www.hubbardstreetdance.com

Hedy Weiss is the dance and theater critic for the Chicago Sun-Times.

VERONIKA PART

Russian Delicacy

BY HARRIS GREEN

Twenty-four-year-old, Russian-born Veronika Part, who joined American Ballet Theatre as a soloist in summer 2002, should be most welcome on these shores. According to family legend, she's been dancing since she heard her first recording of Swan Lake at age 3. Years of training at St. Petersburg's Vaganova Ballet Academy led to her attaining the rank of soloist at the Kirov. Her repertoire includes major roles in La Bayadere, Giselle, The Sleeping Beauty, and--yes--Swan Lake, along with Balanchine's Apollo and Symphony in C. When the Kirov attempted Jewels at the Lincoln Center in July 2002, only Part and Anton Korsakov captured the uniquely perfumed essence of Balanchine's "Emeralds." In the Mimi Paul role, her delicate developpe and softly swirling pirouette matched the rhythmic sub tleties of its Faure score. New York City Ballet would welcome such versatility, but now it belongs to ABT. www.abt.org

Harris Green, a freelance writer, is the former features editor of DANCE MAGAZINE.

CHRISTOPHER HAMPSON

Inventive Classicism

BY MARGARET WILLIS

Like his works, Christopher Hampson, 29, is ebullient, exuberant, and bursting with ideas. A graduate of The Royal Ballet School, he was a member of the English National Ballet for seven years before setting out on a freelance career as choreographer. Tall, lean, and elegant, Hampson adheres to the classical vocabulary, expanding it to fit and challenge today's streamlined, speedy, and supple dancers. He interprets the composer's inspiration into choreography filled with pulsating, nonstop vitality, patterns that flow with the music, and subtle hints of humor. In his ever-expanding repertoire are five pieces for ENB, including a new-for-2002 Nutcracker filled with inventive tidbits. Hampson's second work for the Royal New Zealand Ballet will be Romeo and Juliet, in which, he quips, he plans to do away with Juliet's pointe shoes in the tomb scene--something he has always thought bizarre!

Margaret Willis is a U.K.-based DANCE MAGAZINE contributor.

JAMIE FARQUHAR

Speedy Stepping

BY GIGI BERARDI

Jamie Farquhar is renowned in Canada's Prince Edward Island for the speed and symmetry of his Irish-influenced, traditional Maritime step dancing. His relaxed style and flair for improvisation makes him an audience and competition favorite. Farquhar, performing with the Judy MacLean Dancers at age 13, was among the first islanders to place nationally in step dancing. Even in Canada's Maritime Provinces, where step dancing is omnipresent, Farquhar stands out for his rhythm, timing (he can tap at four times the speed of a typical step beat), precision, and stage presence. He appears to dance "from the knee down," a blend of Irish hard-shoe and traditional step dancing. In the next year, his dancing can be seen mostly at Mount Allison University in Sackville, New Brunswick, where he'll be a first-year student, and at Maritime competitions. Yet with more than sixty first-place prizes and five provincial titles, the 18-year-old is poised for a national career (in productions such as Don Messer's Violin) and beyond.

Gigi Berardi writes about dance for The Olympian, Dance International, and DANCE MAGAZINE.

JOHANNES WIELAND

Dynamic Explorer

BY GUS SOLOMONS JR

New York-based choreographer Johannes Wieland thrills audiences with his freshly original, dynamically intense dances. After a year with Maurice Bejart's company, the German-born dancer wanted to explore his own choreographic vision. While earning an MFA at NYU's Tisch School of the Arts, he began creating a body of startlingly powerful short dances. Even before graduating, he won a coveted spot as one of four choreographers selected to create new work in residency at The Yard on Martha's Vineyard in July 2002.

Wieland, 35, has a rare talent for pushing his skilled dancers, gently but firmly, beyond their own technical and expressive limits. At his New York debut concert at Joyce SoHo in May 2002, his explosive movement invention dazzled the eye as it piqued the emotions. His work will be presented February 15, 2003, in the Dance Sampler at Symphony Space in New York. www.symphonyspace.org

Gus Solomons jr, a New York City critic for DANCE MAGAZINE, dances in his company, Paradigm, with Carmen de Lavallade and Dudley Williams.

THE FOUNDRY'S

Multimedia Meisters

BY RITA FELCIANO

The Foundry's repertoire may be tiny--less than a dozen works, primarily performed in studio spaces and galleries around the San Francisco Bay Area--but with its penchant for formality imbued with a wild imagination and a decidedly surrealistic bent, it draws attention. Co-directors Alex Ketley and Christian Burns, ballet dancers turned choreographers turned multimedia artists, met at the School of American Ballet and until last summer performed with Alonzo King's LINES Ballet.

The creative duo makes work that's performed onscreen as well as onstage. By creating tension and play between the two media, they give corporality to the dancers onscreen even as they distance those onstage. On January 3, their newest creation, the result of a three-month residency at the Yerba Buena Center for the Arts, premieres in San Francisco. In April they are off for another residency at the North Carolina School for the Arts. www.foundryprojects.org

Rita Felciano is dance critic for the San Francisco Bay Guardian and a California critic for DANCE MAGAZINE.

SDUDUZO KA-MBILI

South Africa Personified

BY CHRIS DOHSE

Dancer/choreographer/composer Sduduzo Ka-Mbili is a one-man celebration of South African dance and music. The work he makes for his ensemble, Juxtapower, overflows with fierce dancing, humor, and generosity of spirit. Ka-Mbili's performance electrifies with his passion for movement and rhythm.

Combining gumboot and Zulu forms with modern technique and tap, Ka-Mbili, 28, crafts an empowering vision of a culture previously underrepresented in the United States, a vibrant heritage of indigenous music, dance, visual arts, and literature often wrongly reduced to images of a nation ravaged by poverty, apartheid, and AIDS.

Born near Durban, South Africa, Ka-Mbili first came to the U.S. in 1997 on scholarship to the Ailey Center. He has since performed in Donald Byrd's Harlem Nutcracker, among other projects. He teaches Zulu, gumboot, and contemporary techniques at various studios around New York City. Juxtapower plans to tour in 2003. www.juxtapower.org

Chris Dohse is the former director of Toothmother, a Baltimore-based dance/theater company. He writes frequently for www.danceinsider.com.

MISTY COPELAND

Bright Presence

BY JOSEPH CARMAN

When she was 13, Misty Copeland's history teacher told her that she looked like a ballerina. Copeland had always liked dancing, so she signed up for ballet classes at the San Pedro Ballet School in California. A mere six years later, her natural talent and penchant for hard work has made her one of the most promising dancers at American Ballet Theatre. In a field that is woefully lacking in African American ballerinas, she is a bright presence. "Misty is wonderfully talented," said Georgina Parkinson, a ballet mistress at ABT. "She's going to flourish here."

In Mark Morris's Gong, she nearly outshines a stage full of soloists and principals. She's also been featured in Kirk Peterson's Amazed in Burning Dreams and this fall, she'll appear in Lar Lubovitch's new work for ABT. In both classical and contemporary works, Misty Copeland has a special onstage aura. www.abt.org

Former American Ballet Theatre dancer Joseph Carman contributes to DANCE MAGAZINE, The New York Times, and The Advocate.

DIANE COBURN BRUNING

The Next Level

BY STEVE SUCATO

Choreographer Diane Coburn Binning is one of those rare individuals whose work has the power to exalt and whose drive can floor you. In 2000, Bruning shifted her focus from being merely a world-class choreographer to building her own world-class dance and music ensemble, Chamber Dance Project. In 2003 she will create new works with New York City poet and performance artist Bob Holman and New York City Ballet principal dancer Peter Boal, expand CDP's New York City home season, and tour the company. The 2002 Guggenheim and New York Foundation for the Arts fellowship recipient's goal is to raise the bar on creativity and performance standards. Bruning says she is poised to take CDP-and herself-to the "next level of risk and collaboration." www.chamberdance.org

Steve Sucato is a dance writer and critic based in Erie, Pennsylvania. He is a frequent contributor to several newspapers and national dance publications.

NARRATIVE BALLETS

Storytelling

BY MARTHA ULLMAN WEST

Are there new stories to tell in ballet? And new ways to tell old ones? Since today's choreographers seem to have the storytelling bug, I predict we'll see many narrative ballets, in many lengths, in 2003 and beyond. Paul Vasterling, artistic director of Nashville Ballet, ever searching for stories reflecting Southern culture, will premiere a short ballet based on Tennessee Williams's Night of the Iguana in March. His evening-length Robin Hood closes the current season in April.

Trey McIntyre's Peter Pan, a hit in Houston last March, will be performed by Pittsburgh Ballet Theatre in the fall. The freelance choreographer is transposing other stories to dance, among them the coming-of-age film Sixteen Candles and The Red Balloon. "My love for movies drives the need to make story ballets," he said. "You can go beyond text and dialogue to tell a story in movement about the way people interact."

Todd Bolender could have told him that: His spoof of silent movies, Souvenirs, will be performed in April by Pacific Northwest Ballet. www.nashvilleballet.org; www.pbt.org; www.pnb.org

Senior Advisor Martha Ullman West, a former co-chair of the Dance Critics Association, writes for the Eugene Weekly, Dance Chronicle, Ballet Review, and other publications.

JUSTIN JONES AND CHRIS YON

A Spoonful of Comedy

BY GUS SOLOMONS JR

Justin Jones and Chris Yon teamed up as undergraduates at NYU's Tisch School of the Arts to make zany, witty duets. (Think Harold Lloyd meets Buster Keaton.) The enterprising duo also began organizing and hosting variety shows, where they and their dancer and actor friends could present short experiments in dance, theater, and performance. By now, new installments of their "Chris & Justin Medicine Show" (think Ziegfeld Follies meets Samuel Beckett) have appeared all around town, from a comedy room at the fashionable midtown Gershwin Hotel to a friend's TriBeCa loft. Last April, the "Chris & Justin Show" scored at the restored Leonard Nimoy Thalia Theater at Symphony Space on the Upper West Side and will return with another installment April 24-25, 2003. www.symphonyspace.org

Gus Solomons jr, a New York City critic for DANCE MAGAZINE, dances in his company, Paradigm, with Carmen de Lavallade and Dudley Williams.

LES BALLETS JAZZ DE MONTREAL

Turning Up the Heat

BY LINDE HOWE-BECK

For thirty years, the jet-setting Les Ballets Jazz de Montreal has been a sizzler. But since Louis Robitaille became artistic director in 1998, he's stoked the fire even hotter and redefined the company, grooming a neoclassical style with works by innovative and probing young choreographers such as Crystal Pite. In 2002, the former Ballett Frankfurt dancer accepted a three-year appointment as the company's first resident choreographer.

Robitaille's aim is "a company of emotion, of personality, of freedom," reflecting the evolution of contemporary choreography and honoring the tradition of jazz music in a mix of dance styles. Having appeared in fifty-eight countries on five continents before two million spectators, the always audacious BJM exudes a vivid combination of enjoyment and art in breakneck celebrations of the body. Touring plans include Florida, Texas, and the Midwest in early 2003. www.balletsdemontreal.com

Linde Howe-Beck is a senior Montreal dance writer.

DAISUKE TAKEUCHI

Pittsburgh's Powerhouse

BY KAREN DACKO

With a magnificent split jump in Hey Joe! (2001), Daisuke Takeuchi, now 21, confidently leaped ahead of his peers--and hasn't landed yet. Awesome triple barrel rolls aside, the compact but powerful Pittsburgh Ballet Theatre corps member is a commanding presence--cast mates step aside when he claims center stage.

The Sunagawa City, Japan, native trained at the Hisatomi Yoshiko Ballet and London's Royal Ballet School before joining PBT School's Graduate Program in 1999.

Takeuchi moves through soloist roles in Coppelia, The Nutcracker, and Corcovado with aplomb and elegance. He relishes the classics, especially Don Quixote. "I was just a technique kind of guy. Now I'm learning to act, which I never studied before," he says.

You might have seen this burgeoning artist at Jackson's International Ballet Competition in June 2002. If not, catch him at Pittsburgh's Benedum Center, where he'll perform featured roles in Don Quixote (February 13-16) and Cleopatra (May 8-11). www.pbt.org

Karen Dacko is a contributing dance editor of Pittsburgh Magazine.

HENRI OGUIKE

Music Makes the Man

BY DONALD HUTERA

Henri Oguike is one of the most intelligent, entertaining, and musical young choreographers now working in Britain. Of Welsh-Nigerian origin, he was an outstanding (and founding) member of Richard Alston's company before breaking away to concentrate on his own dances. Oguike, 32, has pushed an Alston-style sensitivity to a musical score in exciting, visceral new directions. He's made pieces to Handel, Bartok, Shostakovich, and Brazilian troubador Caetano Veloso. The moods vary from manically intense to carefree, but the quality remains consistently and dazzlingly high. Oguike's facility for fashioning steps is beautifully served by dancers eager for his pearly challenges. He's also keen to explore dance's theatrical possibilities with gifted lighting designer Guy Hoare. I walked into the London launch of the company's 2001 spring tour filled with urban grumpiness, and came out floating. Next up: a half-hour, full-company piece to Purcell's Dido and Aeneas, to be premiered this month.

Donald Hutera writes for the London Times, Dance Now, Dance Europe, and other publications.

RUBEN MARTIN

Tall, Dark, and He Can Dance Some

BY KATE LYDON

Twenty-five-year-old Ruben Martin is tall and absolutely dreamy, but it's his strong classical technique and authentic movement quality that make him a gift to choreographers. "Every position he hits is perfect, and close to my aesthetic," says San Francisco-based choreographer Julia Adam. "He vibrates, sparkles, melts. If he is onstage, you watch him."

Born in Reus, Spain, and trained in Zaragoza by Maria de Avila, Martin came, via the English National Ballet, to San Francisco Ballet in 2000. In February 2002, San Francisco audiences stood up and took notice when Martin, a corps member, danced the Man in Green, a principal role, in Jerome Robbins's Dances at a Gathering.

Martin blends the elegance, grace, and polish of a confident professional with the spirited excitement of an emerging star. Look for him in the upcoming San Francisco Ballet season, which begins February 4 at the War Memorial Opera House. www.sfballet.org

DANCE MAGAZINE staffer Kate Lydon danced with San Francisco Ballet and American Ballet Theatre.

CARRIE IMLER

Star in the Making

BY GIGI BERARDI

Last year, Pacific Northwest Ballet's Carrie Imler was promoted to principal mid-season--a rare event in the company's history. She earned the unusual promotion following star performances in The Sleeping Beauty and Don Quixote, which included elective displays of dazzling turns. Trained at Central Pennsylvania Youth Ballet and the Pacific Northwest Ballet School under the watchful eyes of, respectively, Marcia Dale Weary and Francia Russell, she is known for the elevation of her jumps and her near-flawless technique. The 25-year-old dancer continues to amaze onstage with her stamina and strength, as well as her artistic interpretation, most recently seen in Kent Stowell's Carmen. It is likely that she will share the limelight with PNB prima ballerina Patricia Barker as an internationally acclaimed star. Imler can be seen on tour and at home in Seattle. www.pnb.org

Gigi Berardi writes about dance for The Olympian, Dance International, and DANCE MAGAZINE.

CITYDANCE ENSEMBLE

D.C.'s Electric, Eclectic Troupe

BY GEORGE JACKSON

A life raft for dance talent in today's rough seas for arts funding is Washington, D.C.'s CityDance Ensemble, a repertory company run by techno-whiz Paul Gordon Emerson. He ignores categories to include ballet, modern, and the maverick. Work demanding recognition now (by the likes of Vladimir Angelov, Dana Tai Soon Burgess, Lucy Bowen McCauley, Alvin Mayes, Kris O'Shee) shares programs with dance that resonates from times past (pieces by Pola Nirenska, Eric Hampton, Daniel West) plus creations by unknowns (including Emerson himself). Promising dancers (Metro DC Dance Award-winner Connie Fink) partner established talent (Boris Willis) and the occasional publicized personality (Rasta Thomas). Rehearsal director Karen Bernstein minds quality. From home stages (Joy of Motion, Dance Place, the Kennedy Center), the company tours near and far, from Richmond, Virginia, to St. Petersburg, Russia. Resident composer Francesca Jandasek sees that music is often live. Upcoming is dancer/filmmaker Ludovic Jolivet's onscreen series. www.citydance.net

George Jackson is a Washington, D.C., dance critic and a writer for DANCE MAGAZINE and European publications.

IRINA GOLUB

Keeping Her Promise

BY KEVIN NG

Irina Golub, the Kirov Ballet's beautiful 22-year-old soloist, graduated from the Vaganova Ballet Academy before she joined the company in 1998. At the Maryinsky Festival in March 2002, she fulfilled her promise shown in the Kirov's 2001 London season. She made two outstanding debuts, dancing the Russian ballerina in Serenade with the most glorious jumps, and the troubadour pas de deux in Romeo and Juliet with classical finesse. Golub is also impressive as the "Rubies" ballerina in Jewels, the first Shade soloist in La Bayadere, and the first odalisque in Le Corsaire. In July 2002, lucky New Yorkers saw her biggest role so far: Kitri in Don Quixote, which she danced with joy, freshness, and dazzling virtuosity.

Golub can be seen throughout the Kirov's season in St. Petersburg through August, especially during the Maryinsky Festival this February, as well as on the company's tours to the U.S. and Britain. www.mariinsky.ru/en

Kevin Ng, based in Hong Kong and London, contributes to the Asian Wall Street Journal, the St. Petersburg Times, and other publications.

JOSE MATEO

Taking On Boston

BY IRIS FANGER

Jose Mateo is artistic director, principal teacher, and choreographer for Jose Mateo's Ballet Theatre, a school and performing company now based in an old church in Cambridge, Massachusetts. The 51-year-old choreographer is not new to the region, nor does he have a conventional ballet background--he started dancing as an undergraduate at Princeton University. But he has something the other game in town does not: himself as resident choreographer, crafting ballets perfectly suited to the troupe of professional dancers he grooms with care. Mateo had the chutzpah to take on the Boston Ballet, for years mounting his own version of The Nutcracker down Tremont Street from the larger company's production. Now, with his new high-ceilinged, Gothic-arched home, look for Mateo to attract an even larger circle of fans for his ambitious works (most of them set to classical music), which are beautifully evocative in mood and tone. The company next performs March 14-April 12. www.ballettheatre.org

Longtime DANCE MAGAZINE contributor Iris Fanger writes about theater and dance for many publications, including the Boston Phoenix and the Christian Science Monitor.

ALEXANDRA ANSANELLI

Versatile Harmony

BY CLIVE BARNES

Alexandra Ansanelli dances some where between a hummingbird and a lark. She is exceptionally gifted, with a manner that is intriguingly both remote and embracing. So--like most dancers better than most--she is a shrewd bundle of contradictions, a harmony of contrasts.

Born in Laurel Hollow, New York, Ansanelli started ballet training at the age of 10 and entered the School of American Ballet in 1990. She was invited to become an apprentice of New York City Ballet in the fall of 1996 at age 15, and joined the company that December. She received the Princess Grace Award for Emerging Artists in 1997, and one year later was promoted to soloist.

Despite missing most of the 1999 and 2000 seasons due to an injury, Ansanelli's flawless attack and intriguing edginess have marked her as a ballerina of the very near future. www.nycballet.org

Senior Consulting Editor Clive Barnes has been writing about dance for the New York Post, The New York Times, the London Times, and Dance and Dancers for fifty-two years.

AMANDA MILLER

Pretty Ugly Is Pretty Great

BY WENDY PERRON

Amanda Miller, the sensual, wildlyin ventive dancer who helped William Forsythe develop his edgy, off-balance style in the early 1980s, has been directing a company in Germany for the past five years. Next month she brings Ballett Freiburg Pretty Ugly to New York's Lincoln Center as part of the Great Performers series, with the United States premiere of The Art of the Fugue (2000), to Bach's music of the same name, played live onstage. The piece is structured like a game, with nine dancers waiting on a bench to step into the ring, where they playfully slip from bursts of free movement to diabolical coordinations, from classical ballet to contemporary idioms. One critic described the movement as "hugely liberating" and called the choreography "a breath of clean, clear, fresh air." In addition to New York, touring plans for 2003 include Germany, Switzerland, and Norway. www.lincolncenter.org www.pudc.org

Wendy Perron is the New York editor of DANCE MAGAZINE.

GUILLAUME COTE

Commanding Cote

BY PAULA CITRON

Guillaume Cote commands the stage, blessed with perfect feet and legs, advanced turnout, astonishing extensions, flexible body, beautiful arms, and romantic good looks. He is also a brilliant actor, never letting technique get in the way of characterization.

Born in rural Quebec, the young Cote was a hockey goalie who dreamed about being a rock star. But he also took dance classes, where his natural talent pointed to future greatness. He trained at the National Ballet School in Toronto, joining the National Ballet of Canada in 1999. After only seven months, the then 18-year-old was cast as the Poet in Fokine's Les Sylphides, followed by other leading roles. Cote was promoted to second soloist in June 2000 and first soloist two years later.

"A virtuoso dancer is impressive to watch," he says, "but I want to be more than that. I want to tell stories. I want to be inside the dance."

www.national.ballet.ca

Paula Citron is senior dance writer and music critic for The Globe and Mail in Toronto, Canada.

--Cheryl Ossola, Special Section Editor, 25 to Watch
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Title Annotation:dancers
Author:Ossola, Cheryl
Publication:Dance Magazine
Geographic Code:1USA
Date:Jan 1, 2003
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