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Biography

Jump to: Overview (2) | Mini Bio (1) | Spouse (2) | Trivia (17) | Personal Quotes (5)

Overview (2)

Date of Birth 27 October 1946Copenhagen, Denmark
Height 6' 2" (1.88 m)

Mini Bio (1)

Peter Martins was born on October 27, 1946 in Copenhagen, Denmark. He is known for his work on The Turning Point (1977), Living a Ballet Dream: Six Dancers Tell Their Stories (2001) and Åbning af Operaen (2005). He has been married to Darci Kistler since 1981. They have one child. He was previously married to Lise La Cour.

Spouse (2)

Darci Kistler (1981 - present) (1 child)
Lise La Cour (? - 1973) (1 child)

Trivia (17)

Has choreographed more than 50 works for the New York City Ballet.
He collects art.
Had a legendary partnership with NYCB ballerina Suzanne Farrell. Their tall stature and dancing prowess made them a much talked about and praised team.
The role of "The Cavalier" in Balanchine's interpretation of "The Nutcracker" was his most perfomed role and the one he is most famous for. Some say, because it is the character he is the most like.
When his mentor and world renown ballet master George Balanchine passed away in 1983, he became Co-Ballet Master in Chief of New York City Ballet with Jerome Robbins. But sadly Robbins himself passed on in 1990. Martins became the sole director in chief of the NYCB.
He became Chairman of Faculty of the School of American Ballet in 1983.
Had a infamous on-again, off-again relationship with lover and even disciple NYCB ballerina Heather Watts. She was obsessed with Martins as a lover, friend and confidant. He had affection for Heather and cast her in his first attempt at choreography called "Calcium Light Night."
Had a brief partnership and even relationship with wild-child and self-destructive ballerina Gelsey Kirkland.
He began creating dances in 1977 with Calcium Light Night, a series of abstract modernist studies to the music of Charles Ives which remains a critical favorite. Balanchine encouraged him from the beginning, and critics responded early on to his seeming promise as Balanchine's aesthetic heir. Martins created or staged nearly 50 works in his first fifteen years as a choreographer--but the critical consensus is that his works are not yet fulfilling his early promise.

He seems still to be seeking his own voice, and this is no easy task in the face of such expectations. By his own admission he would not be listed among the top ten choreographers of his time.
Was nominated for Broadway's 1986 Tony Award as Best Choreographer for "Song & Dance."
In his youth, he studied ballet with the School of the Royal Danish Ballet and danced with the company from 1965 to 1969. He eventually danced as a guest artist with the legendary New York City Ballet and left the Royal Danish Ballet and even his own native homeland to join NYCB as a permanent member.
All the people in his family were dancers. He claims he "never really had a lot of choice about the future of his profession."
In 1983, after the inevitable death of Balanchine, Martins retired from dancing early and with Jerome Robbins became co-ballet master in chief of the company, a position Martins has occupied alone since the retirement of Robbins in 1989.
His autobiography "Far From Denmark" was never a best-seller and therefore, never made it into a second printing.
Was named man of the year by Danish American Society, 1980.
Enjoys disco dancing and collecting art.
Still Chairman of the New York City Ballet and the School of American Ballet.

Personal Quotes (5)

(On what it takes to be a professional ballerina): "It doesn't hurt to be pretty."
If these (ballet) critics were to make a list of 10 world choreographers, they would never include me. I'm simply not considered a choreographer to them.
(On retiring from dancing early to take the helm at the New York City Ballet): "I haven't regretted it for one moment."
There are a hundered dancers who need attention, help and coaching. They come and ask you when they need help, not when you have the time to listen.
(On George Balanchine as a teacher): "He told me that if I listened to him, I would have a future with the company - but if I didn't I might as well as go to American Ballet Theatre [ABT] and be a classical dancer."

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