Guillaume Côté

Guillaume Côté, dancer, choreographer, composer (born at Lac St-Jean, Que 17 Sept 1981). Guillaume Côté is a ballet dancer respected internationally for his outstanding musicality, technique and dramatic interpretation.

Guillaume Côté

Guillaume Côté, dancer, choreographer, composer (born at Lac St-Jean, Que 17 Sept 1981). Guillaume Côté is a ballet dancer respected internationally for his outstanding musicality, technique and dramatic interpretation.

When he was a child in Northern Quebec, his arts-loving schoolteacher parents decided their community lacked culture and invited a Montréal teacher, France Proulx, to establish a ballet school in Lac St-Jean. With his sister and his many cousins, Guillaume Côté began pre-ballet classes at age 3. Ballet quickly became a fundamental part of life; in Lac St-Jean, he says, ''Everybody did ballet.''

Although he grew up playing piano and guitar and jamming with his friends, at age 11 Guillaume Côté and a cousin were accepted into the NATIONAL BALLET SCHOOL OF CANADA's (NBS) summer program in Toronto. They auditioned, he explained, because they "wanted to be rock stars and we needed to know English." Côté enrolled in NBS's full-time program in 1998.

By his early teens he had discovered true male classical dance as demonstrated by Mikhail Baryshnikov and Rudolf Nureyev, and committed himself to follow their lead. Although playing music had been paramount in his life, he now decided his destiny was dance. He put musical performing aside and studied composition instead. Today, composing is a parallel career.

After graduating from the NBS in 1999, Guillaume Côté joined the New York City Ballet for the summer. Impressed when he saw the NATIONAL BALLET OF CANADA (NBC) on tour, he returned to Toronto to join the company as a corps de ballet member. By 2004 he had achieved the highest rank of principal dancer and began making international guest appearances. In 2010, with busy careers in composing, choreographing and performance, he became the NBC's guest artist-in-residence.

Noted for interpreting princely roles in classics like Swan Lake, The Sleeping Beauty, Coppelia, and Le Corsaire, Côté also has extensive experience in neoclassical and contemporary works. He has performed ballets by George Balanchine, Jerome Robbins, Christopher Wheeldon, James KUDELKA, Marie CHOUINARD and many others. He has also created roles in Derek Deane's Strictly Gershwin, Eddy TOUSSAINT's Cain & Abel, and Kudelka's Cinderella.

Guillaume Côté has been a guest with dozens of companies from cities as diverse as Hamburg, Havana, Tokyo, Milan, Mexico, London, New York and Buenos Aires.

During his student days in 1998, Guillaume Côté won 2 prizes: the Peter Dwyer Award and the Erik Bruhn Award. His choreography was recognized in 2008 with a prize from the Hanover Choreographic Competition.

His film credits include Moving to His Music: The Two Muses of Guillaume (2007), in which he starred as well as composed the music. Moving to His Music won a GEMINI AWARD for best performance in 2007 and a Galileo 2000 Prize in 2008.