DWIGHT RHODEN Co-Founder, Co-Artistic Director
Dwight Rhoden (Founding Artistic Director/Resident Choreographer) has established a remarkably wide-ranging career, earning distinction from The New York Times as “one of the most sought out choreographers of the day.”
A native of Dayton, Ohio, who began dancing at age 17, Rhoden has performed with Dayton Contemporary Dance Company, Les Ballet Jazz De Montreal and as a principal dancer with Alvin Ailey American Dance Theater. As a performer, he has appeared in numerous television specials, documentaries and commercials throughout the United States, Canada, and Europe and has been a featured performer on PBS Great Performances specials.
In 1994, Rhoden, along with Desmond Richardson founded Complexions Contemporary Ballet. Together they have brought their unique brand of contemporary dance to the world for over two decades. CCB is widely considered “America’s Original Multicultural Contemporary Ballet Company”, and is celebrated for its pioneering spirit, and the building of a universal brand that continues to challenge traditional ideas, and redefine possibilities in the dance arena. Under Rhoden’s direction, Complexions has become a dance institution that is much in demand. CCB has to lead the way in Contemporary Ballet in America, by removing traditional boundaries, and celebrating the beauty of differences - through courageous, innovative and cutting edge programming. Over the years, Complexions has remained consistent in delivering a profound passion for diversity that has framed its vision and become its hallmark.
For nearly 3 decades, Rhoden’s choreography has been the lynchpin in the development of the Complexions repertory. Since 1994 Rhodens’ work has filled some of the most prestigious theaters across the globe including, The Joyce Theater (NYC), The Bolshoi Theater (Moscow), The Mar,insky Theater (St Petersburg), Maison De La Danse (Lyon), The Dorothy Chandler Pavilion (Los Angeles), BAM (Brooklyn) Cairo Opera House (Egypt), The Arts Center (Melbourne, Australia), The Auditorium Theater (Chicago), Telaviv Opera House (Israel), The ASB Theater (New Zealand), Holland Dance Festival, Grand Theatre De Geneva (Switzerland), Isle De Dance Festival (Paris), as well as others. CCB and Rhodens’ work has been presented on five continents and in over 20 countries, including the USA, Canada, South America, Mexico, Europe, Asia, Poland, Australia, New Zealand, Russia, The Baltic Region, Egypt, Israel, and the Middle East. “Musicality, innovation, purpose, consistency, 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)
Rhoden has created over 80 ballets for Complexions, as well as numerous other companies, including Alvin Ailey American Dance Theater, Ballet Arizona, The Aspen Santa Fe Ballet Company, The Atlanta Ballet, BalletMet, The Dance Theater of Harlem, Colorado Ballet, Dayton Contemporary Dance Company, The Joffrey Ballet, Miami City Ballet, New York City Ballet, Charlotte Ballet, The Pennsylvania Ballet, Philadanco, Marinsky Ballet, Minneapolis Dance Theater, Phoenix Dance Company, Sacramento Ballet, Oakland Ballet, Pittsburgh Ballet Theater, Ballet Nice’ Mediterranean, Tulsa Ballet, The Washington Ballet, The San Francisco Ballet, Western Australian Ballet, Zenon Dance Company, among others.
Mr. Rhodens’ has also directed and choreographed for TV, film, theater and live performances including So You Think You Can Dance, E! Entertainment’s “Tribute to Style”, Amici, Cirque Du Soleil’s Zumanity, and choreographed and appeared in the feature film “One Last Dance”.
He has also worked with, and/or created works for such high-profile artists as Prince, David Bowie, 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 was also commissioned to create a work for the centennial celebration of renowned collage artist Romare Bearden, choreographed a ballet for Diana Vishneva’s Beauty In Motion, and has Directed and Choreographed the full-length ballet The Great Gatsby for soloists of The Marinsky, Ukrainian National Ballet, and The United States. Additionally, he has choreographed full-lengths Pulcinella, Othello, Carmine Burana, and Anthem.
“Rhoden’s work is post-Balanchinean choreography, a new aesthetic in movement, stage, picture, and performance concepts reflecting a post- modern, techno-savvy worldview” (Dance Magazine).
Widely known as “a dancer’s choreographer,” Rhoden has worked with, coached and created for some of the most diverse artists spanning the worlds of ballet and contemporary dance including legendary dance artists Carmen De Lavallade, Misty Copeland, Wendy Whelan, Maria Kowroski, Diana Vishneva, Desmond Richardson, Sandra Brown, Jodie Gates, and Gus Solomons, to name a few.
Mr. Rhoden has served as Artist in Residence at universities around the United States including USC Glorya Kaufman School of Dance, New York University, Juilliard, UC Irvine, Skidmore College, The Boston Conservatory, and The University of Mississippi, where his 2004 Racial Reconciliation Project was credited as a catalyst for dialogue in a community that had been historically divided.
Mr. Rhoden is a beneficiary recipient of various honors and awards including the New York Foundation for the Arts Award, and subsequent induction into the NYFA Hall of Fame, The Choo San Goh Award for Choreography, and The Ailey School’s Apex Award. Rhoden was recently nominated for a Benois De La Dance award for his libretto for Gatsby The Ballet and received an Honorary Doctorate degree from The Boston Conservatory in recognition of his extensive contributions to the field of dance.
Rhoden’s latest works include:
LOVE ROCKS (Lenny KRAVITZ) - CCB
STAR DUST (David Bowie)
BACH 25 (JS BACH) - CCB
WOKE (Logic, Kendrick, Lil Wayne)- CCB
CATCHING FEELINGS (Beethoven)- CCB
SUNRISE DIVINE (Gospel) -Atlanta Ballet
LET'S BEGIN AT THE END (Phillip Glass/ Michael Nyman) - San Francisco Ballet