Swan song to swan lake

     Print Edition: March 17, 2013

The film Black Swan was a real clincher for director Darren Aronofsky's career, but it also did a lot for its cast and crew. Choreographer Benjamin Millepied, who helped transform lead actress Natalie Portman into an obsessed, paranoid ballerina later went on to become her better half. But more importantly, his work helped him land one of the most coveted and respected jobs in the world of dance.

He has been named director of one of the world's most revered ballet companies, the Paris Opera Ballet. The Frenchman who is just 35, is a former principal dancer with the New York City Ballet, but has no previous ties to the company, and is known mostly for his innovative work outside of classical ballet.

Replacing Brigitte Lefevre, who has been director of dance at the Paris Opera since 1995, he will be starting at his new position in September this year. Millepied, who was born in Bordeaux and trained at the Lyon Conservatory, retired as a dancer in 2011, and has since been focussing on choreography. His appointment comes amidst much speculation, as it is highly unusual for someone from the outside to occupy such a high and coveted position and run the company. Let's wait and watch.


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