Dwight Rhoden has established a remarkably wide-ranging career, earning recognition from The New York Times as “one of the most sought out choreographers of the day”. Rhoden was born in Dayton (Ohio, US), and started dancing at 17. He has worked with Dayton Contemporary Dance Company, Les Ballet Jazz De Montreal and as a principal dancer with Alvin Ailey American Dance Theatre. As a dancer, he has taken part in TV projects, documentaries and commercials in US, Canada and Europe. In addition, Rhoden made appearances in PBS “Great Performances” specials.
In 1994, Rhoden and the legendary dancer Desmond Richardson formed Complexions Contemporary Ballet.
Together they have brought a new contemporary style into the ballet world, creating a brand that remains unique for 20 years. Complexions Contemporary Ballet troupe is widely known as “America’s Original Multicultural Dance Company”. Complexions is recognised for its pioneering spirit and the creation of its own style. The project continues to experiment with the classical ideas to re-discover the opportunities of dance. Led by Rhoden, Complexions became a highly demanded project.
“Musicality, innovation, purpose, consistency, a brilliant use of stage space and the ability to tell a story — all these qualities make him (Rhoden) one of today’s elect choreographers.” (The LA Times)
Since 1994 Rhoden created more than 80 ballets for Complexions, as well as many works for other troupes including Alvin Ailey American Dance Theatre. The Aspen Santa Fe Ballet Company, Ballet Met, The Dance Theatre of Harlem, Colorado Ballet, Dayton Contemporary Dance Company, The Joffrey Ballet, Miami City Ballet, New York City Ballet/Diamond Project, North Carolina Dance Theatre, The Pennsylvania Ballet, Philadanco, Mariinskiy Ballet, Minneapolis Dance Theatre, Phoenix Dance Company, Sacramento Ballet, Oakland Ballet, Pittsburgh Ballet Theatre, The Washington Ballet, Zenon Dance Company and others.
Rhoden directed the production for various artists, uniting the world of ballet and contemporary dance. He is a director and choreographer for TV shows, movies and theatre performances including So You Think You Can Dance, E! Entertainment’s Tribute to Style and Cirque Du Soleil, as well as collaborations with Prince, Lenny Kravitz, Kelly Clarkson, ELEW, David Rozenblatt, Nicholas Payton, The Drifters, Paul Simon, Billy Strayhorn, Nina Simone, Marvin Gaye, U2, The Turtle Creek Chorus and Patrick Swayze.
Rhoden’s work is the choreography a-la post-Balanchinean is full of a new aesthetic in action, picture and performance, reflecting post-modernism.
In 2004 Rhoden created the “Racial Reconciliation” project at The University of Mississippi recognised as the catalyst of dialogue in a historically divided society.
In 1998, Rhoden was awarded with a New York Foundation with the Arts Award. In 2001 he got The Choo San Goh Award for Choreography, and in 2006 — The Ailey School’s Apex Award in recognition of his extensive contributions to the field of dance.
Today Dwight Rhoden is working on one of the biggest projects in his career — staging of The Great Gatsby ballet.
“Dwight Rhoden brought the interesting sharpness of street culture into choreography. He took ballet techniques and destroyed the rules. He made ballet sexy, exciting and fun. In his pas de deux you see a relationship between a man and a woman, many could only dream about...”