Benjamin Millepied is a choreographer and founder of the dance troupe L.A. Dance Project, well known for its world tours performing ballet shows that he created, wrote and directed. Energetic, charming and warm, this genuine ‘dancer 2.0’ perfectly embodies a new generation, at the crossroads between classical ballet and modern dance.
Richard Mille appreciates the charm of a complex and poetic figure. It’s easy to draw parallels between their two worlds. As Millepied explains, there are many constraints linked to form and tradition when creating a ballet, which follows trajectories and a highly structured geometric form. The dancer and watchmaker are even more closely linked by their artistic point of view. Benjamin’s creative process is simultaneously intense, demanding and extremely precise. In 1998, he was promoted to soloist with the New York City Ballet, then principal dancer in 2002. He is globally renowned for the film Black Swan, which he choreographed and in which he himself played the role of a dancer. In addition to being director of the Paris Opera Ballet from 2014 to 2016, Millepied is a film director, having directed and co-written the film Carmen, which was released in 2022. Given this extensive experience, he knows more than anyone what it means to move an audience and, in doing so, bring people together.
‘The notion of time, the time that I impose on myself to work on every detail is essential to my eyes.’
Being a choreographer is like being a craftsman, like a watchmaker for Millepied. He loves being able to talk about choreography in these terms because this is a work which demands a lot of technical skills.
While a great fan of perfect technical, classical ballet in accordance with the purest tradition, he also knows how to establish strong links with modern art, based on his genuine understanding of the medium. His quest is to build bridges with other disciplines and to develop real partnerships.
‘In dancing, you always work with rhythm at the front of your mind, the question of rhythm is sometimes very complex.’