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Interview with Kevin McKenzie

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Interview with Kevin McKenzie: Speaking of Dancing Oral History Project

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Interview with Kevin McKenzie
Additional title: Speaking of Dancing Oral History Project
McKenzie, Kevin (creator)
Thom, Rose Anne (Interviewer)
Bass, Anne H. (Funder)
Bernadi, François (Videographer)

Speaking of Dancing Oral History Project

Dates / Origin
Date Issued: 2011
Library locations
Jerome Robbins Dance Division
Shelf locator: *MGZIDVD 5-7021
Shelf locator: *MGZMT 5-7021
McKenzie, Kevin
Day, Mary, 1910-2006
Black, Margaret, 1930?-
Dowell, Anthony
Guillem, Sylvie, 1965-
Tharp, Twyla
Tudor, Antony, 1909-1987
American Ballet Theatre
Jacqueline Kennedy Onassis School.
Joffrey Ballet
Jardin aux lilas (Choreographic work : Tudor)
Nutcracker (Choreographic work : McKenzie)
Swan lake (Choreographic work : McKenzie, after Ivanov and Petipa)
Ballet -- Study and teaching
Dance schools -- New York (State) -- New York
Statement of responsibility: interviewer, Rose Anne Thom.
Interview with Kevin McKenzie conducted by Rose Anne Thom on Oct. 22, 2011 at the New York Public Library for the Performing Arts in New York City, as part of the Speaking of Dancing Oral History Project.
Creation/production credits: Video production and post-production, François Bernadi.
Performers: Interviewee, Kevin McKenzie.
Venue: Videotaped at the New York Public Library for the Performing Arts, Oct. 22, 2011.
Funding: The recording of this interview was made possible by a gift from Anne H. Bass.
System details: Streaming video.
Physical Description
Electronic resource
1 streaming video file (97 min.)
Sd., col. +
Extent: Transcript (56 leaves)
Kevin McKenzie, artistic director of American Ballet Theatre (ABT), is interviewed by Rose Anne Thom. McKenzie speaks about his early training in Washington, D.C. with Mary Day; his interest in narrative and character development rather than pure dancing; Day's philosophy of teaching; his decision to found the Jacqueline Kennedy Onassis (JKO) School at ABT, the school's purpose and his thoughts on the teaching of ballet in the U.S. He discusses his relationship with Maggie [Margaret] Black, who coached him; his first professional job, with the National Ballet of Washington; his initial efforts to join ABT; his time with the Joffrey Ballet; learning the role of Oberon in Frederick Ashton's The dream, and the impact of seeing Anthony Dowell dance the role; how he joined ABT. Returning to the subject of the JKO school, he speaks about the development of the school's curriculum; his partnerships with ballerinas, including Martine van Hamel, Natalia Makarova and Sylvia Guillem; the interpretation of abstract dance works; his first experiences choreographing. McKenzie relates anecdotes about working with Twyla Tharp on As time goes by and with Antony Tudor on Lilac garden; he speaks about how his performances of roles changed over time; his choreography for The nutcracker and Swan lake, and his interpretation of the story of Swan lake; and his thoughts about being an artistic director.
Type of Resource
Moving image
NYPL catalog ID (B-number): b19541110
Universal Unique Identifier (UUID): 2a31c450-f874-0130-37a4-3c075448cc4b
Rights Statement
This item is protected by copyright and/or related rights. You are free to use this Item in any way that is permitted by the copyright and related rights legislation that applies to your use. For other uses you need to obtain permission from the rights-holder(s).

Item timeline of events

  • 2011: Issued
  • 2013: Digitized
  • 2017: Found by you!
  • 2018

MLA Format

Jerome Robbins Dance Division, The New York Public Library. "Interview with Kevin McKenzie" The New York Public Library Digital Collections. 2011.

Chicago/Turabian Format

Jerome Robbins Dance Division, The New York Public Library. "Interview with Kevin McKenzie" New York Public Library Digital Collections. Accessed November 25, 2017.

APA Format

Jerome Robbins Dance Division, The New York Public Library. (2011). Interview with Kevin McKenzie Retrieved from

Wikipedia Citation

<ref name=NYPL>{{cite web | url= | title= (moving image) Interview with Kevin McKenzie, (2011) }} |author=Digital Collections, The New York Public Library |accessdate=November 25, 2017 |publisher=The New York Public Library, Astor, Lennox, and Tilden Foundation}}</ref>

Interview with Kevin McKenzie