Mostly Credited As: Mikhail Baryshnikov
Sometimes Credited As: Mikhail Baryshinikov
Birth Name: Mikhail Nikolaevitch Baryshnikov
Date Of Birth: January 28, 1948 (Age 67)
Country Of Birth: Latvia
Birth Place: Riga, Latvia, USSR [now Latvia]
Height: 5' 7" (1.7 m)
Mikhail Baryshnikov, a native of Riga, Latvia, began studying ballet at age nine; as a teenager, he entered the school of the Kirov Ballet, graduating from student to principal dancer in 1969. In 1974, he left Russia to pursue a career with ballet and modern companies around the world, settling in NYC in 1979 as a principal dancer with the American Ballet Theatre and from 1979 to 1980, with New York City Ballet. 1n 1980 he returned to ABT as artistic director, nurturing a new generation of dancers and choreographers. In his illustrious career, he has danced more than one hundred different works on the world's greatest stages. Most of the world's foremost choreographers have created works especially for him. Baryshnikov has proved himself a capable actor, starring in five films and earning an Oscar-nomination for his performance in "The Turning Point." He has appeared numerous times on television, including three Emmy award-winning specials. In 1989, he appeared on Broadway in "Metamorphosis," earning a Tony nomination and a Drama Critics Award. From 1990-2002, Baryshnikov was co-director and dancer with White Oak Dance Project, using his remarkable talents to expand the repertoire of American modern dance. Mr. Baryshnikov is currently devoting his time and energy to the Baryshnikov Arts Center, which is in it's inaugural year. Among his most recent awards are the Kennedy Center Honors, The National Medal of Honor, the Commonwealth Award, The Chubb Fellowship, and the Jerome Robbins Award.Movie Credits
To this day, Misha is still considered the most famous name in ballet.
Company Business (1991) - Pyotr Ivanovich Grushenko
The Cabinet of Dr. Ramirez (1991) - Cesar
Dancers (1987) - Tony
White Nights (1985) - Nikolai 'Kolya' Rodchenko
Don Quixote (1984) (TV) - Basilio
The Nutcracker (1977) (TV) - Nutcracker/Prince
The Turning Point (1977) - Yuri Kopeikine
Giselle (1977) (TV) - Count Albrecht
Trivia In 1987, Misha received the Man of the Year Award at the Hasty Pudding Theatricals, USA.
In 1978, Misha was nominated for the Golden Globe for Best Motion Picture Actor in a Supporting Role for: The Turning Point (1977).
In 1978, Misha was nominated for the Emmy for Special Classification of Outstanding Individual Achievement for: The Nutcracker (1977).
In 1979, Misha won the Emmy for Outstanding Individual Achievement - Special Events for: Baryshnikov at the White House (1979).
In 1982, Misha was nominated for the Emmy for Outstanding Variety, Music or Comedy Program for: Baryshnikov in Hollywood (1982).
In 1985, Misha was nominated for the Emmy for Outstanding Classical Program in the Performing Arts for the Great Performances: Dance in America (1976) episode Baryshnikov by Tharp with American Ballet Theatre.
In 1988, Misha was nominated for the Emmy for Outstanding Individual Performance in a Variety or Music Program for the Great Performances (1972) episode Celebrating Gershwin.
In 1989, Misha won the Emmy for Outstanding Individual Performance in Classical Music/Dance Programming for the Great Performances: Dance in America (1976 episode Baryshnikov Dances Balanchine.
In 1978, Misha won the Special David Award for: The Turning Point (1977), as well as for his contributions to the art of dancing.
Misha was a 2000 recipient of the John F. Kennedy Center Honors.
Mikhail Baryshnikov Quotes
"I am not the first straight dancer, nor the last."
"Dancers are made, not born."
"No matter what I try to do or explore, my Kirov training, my expertise, and my background call me to return to dancing after all, because that's my real vocation, and I have to serve it."
"No one is born a dancer. You have to want it more than anything."
"No dancer can watch Fred Astaire and not know that we all should have been in another business."
"The essence of all art is to have pleasure in giving pleasure."
"I do not try to dance better than anyone else. I only try to to dance better than myself."
"There comes a moment in a young artist's life when he knows he has to bring something to the stage from within himself. He has to put in something in order to be able to take something out."
"The great Fred Astaire is remote. It's as if he were in an incubator, breathing his own air. His perfection is like crystal: you can see through it. It's hopeless to try and imitate him."
"What do dancers think of Fred Astaire? It's no secret. We hate him. He gives us a complex because he's too perfect. His perfection is an absurdity. It's too hard to face."