Here and Now with Robin Young and Jeremy Hobson
Public radio's live
midday news program
With sponsorship from
Mathworks - Accelerating the pace of engineering and science
Accelerating the pace
of engineering and science
Thursday, October 20, 2011

Ballet Legend Edward Villella Looks Back On Career

Edward Villella "Prodigal Son" -- 1960. (Courtesy of PhotoFest New York City)Edward Villella and Patricia McBride "Harlequinade" -- 1965. (Courtesy of PhotoFest New York City)1020_prodigal-sonEdward Villella in 2010. (Courtesy of Gio Alma)

Edward Villella has been called America’s greatest male classical dancer. He joined the New York City Ballet in 1957, under the tutelage of choreographer George Balanchine.

Villella likens Balanchine to Mozart and Shakespeare, and “Mr. B,” as he was called by his dancers, created some of his greatest ballets for Villella.

Since 1986, he’s been at the helm of the Miami City Ballet, the company he founded after he stopped performing. He recently announced that when the 2012 – 2013 season ends, he’ll retire.

Villella looked back on his career with Here & Now’s Robin Young, noting that as a young dancer “when that curtain went up, I couldn’t wait to hit the stage. I didn’t walk… I just burst onto a stage,” he said.


  • Edward Villella, founder and artistic director of the Miami City Ballet

Please follow our community rules when engaging in comment discussion on this site.

Experts share a range of perspectives on how to combat the Islamic State militant group, and the role the U.S. should play.

Robin and Jeremy

Robin Young and Jeremy Hobson host Here & Now, a live two-hour production of NPR and WBUR Boston.

November 26 7 Comments

Arlo Guthrie Celebrates 50 Years Of ‘Alice’s Restaurant’

Listening to the 18-minute musical monologue has been a Thanksgiving tradition among folk music fans for decades.

November 26 Comment

One Refugee’s Story Of Coming To America

Paul Okot vividly remembers landing at JFK airport in New York at 7 years old, after fleeing violence in southern Sudan.

November 25 3 Comments

Rapper Le1f Finds Struggle And Moral Diversity In American Music

We've been asking musicians what they think of when they think "American music." Today we hear from Khalif Diouf, aka Le1f.

November 24 7 Comments

Ferguson: One Year Later

City council member Wesley Bell looks back on the past year since protests and violence swept the Missouri city.