Richard Holden (dancer)

Richard Holden (dancer)

Richard Holden (born Braintree, Massachusetts) is a dancer, choreographer, choreologist, teacher, musician and writer.

Richard discovered an interest in dance at age 14 and began Russian folk dance lessons in Boston with Senia Russakoff. At 16, he went to New York with scholarships to study with George Chaffee. the Metropolitan Opera Ballet School and at theAmerican Ballet Theater school. After dancing for several years in Summer Stock and operating a dance school in Elmira, New York, he went to England to study the Royal Ballet repertory. In England he danced for a year with Ballets Minerva, a touring ballet company. Russian speaking, he then went to the former USSR to study Igor Moiseyev style Slavic folk dance, Vaganova ballet technique and Soviet repertory.

After graduating from the London Institute of Choreology in 1966 with an Associate degree in Benesh movement notation, Dame Alicia Markova offered him a contract with the Metropolitan Opera Ballet where she was Director. He danced during the first season of the new Met at Lincoln Center, becoming a soloist. The following year he became the Met's resident choreologist. He later joined the Harkness Ballet, Joffrey Ballet and American Ballet Theater as the first American Choreologist and certified Labanotator.

With regular leaves of absence from the New York companies, he started the Tucson Civic Ballet as director and choreographer, which subsequently became Ballet Arizona. He appeared in several Hollywood motion pictures in specialized dancing roles. He has choreographed and staged dance works and productions for companies all over the USA, including his "Firebird", "Upstairs Downstairs", "Two Pigeons", "Khatchaturiana", "Chakra" and his award winning "Alice". Settling in Tucson, he became resident choreographer for the Arizona Opera and formed a Russian dance ensemble to perform with the Arizona Balalaika Orchestra which has toured all over Arizona, into Mexico and the Soviet Union. His writing has appeared in various magazines including Dance Magazine and Opera News as well as the Christian Science Monitor and other newspapers.

External links

* [ Richard Holden bio "Dancing on a Greyhound Bus"]
* [ Arizona Balalaika Orchestra]
* [ Ballet Arizona]

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