Stephen Petronio

Stephen Petronio was born in Newark, New Jersey, and received a BA from Hampshire College in Amherst, MA, where he began dancing in 1974. Initially inspired by the dancing of Rudolf Nureyev and Steve Paxton, Petronio was the first male dancer of the Trisha Brown Company (1979 to 1986). He has gone on to build a unique and powerful language of movement in a career that spans over 25 years. He has received numerous accolades, including a John Simon Guggenheim Fellowship, a Foundation for Contemporary Performance Arts Award, an American Choreographer Award, and a New York Dance and Performance “Bessie” Award. Stephen Petronio founded Stephen Petronio Company is 1984 and has since performed in 26 countries throughout the world. Petronio has created over 35 works for his company. He has collaborated with some of the most talented and provocative artists in the world, including composers Nico Muhly, Fischerspooner, Rufus Wainwright, Lou Reed, Laurie Anderson, Michael Nyman, Diamanda Galás, Wire, and David Linton; visual artists Cindy Sherman, Anish Kapoor, Donald Baechler, and Stephen Hannock, and fashion designers Jillian Lewis, Adam Kimmel, Benjamin Cho, Tara Subkoff, Tanya Sarne/Ghost, and Leigh Bowery, among others. Petronio has been commissioned by some of the world’s most prestigious modern and ballet companies, among them are William Forsythe’s Frankfurt Ballet, Deutsche Oper Berlin, Lyon Opera Ballet, Sydney Dance Company, the Washington Ballet, and The Scottish Ballet. And his company repertory works have been set on numerous companies including Norrdans in Sweden, Dance Works Rotterdam, National Dance Company Wales, Ballet National de Marseille, Ballet de Lorraine, London Contemporary Dance Theater, and National Dance Company of Wales. Petronio was the choreographer for Prometheus Bound (American Repertory Theater), a musical made in collaboration with director Diane Paulus, writer and lyricist Steven Sater, and composer Serj Tankian (premiere March 2011). He is currently planning a new evening-length work with composer Ryan Lott and visual artist Janine Antoni, and is working on a memoir titled Slippery Grace: Notes from a Life in Motion.