Named as one of DANCE MAGAZINE’s Top 25 To Watch for 2016, New York and Los Angeles-based artist, Norbert De La Cruz III, has lured the hearts of his community and audiences, generating nationwide choreographic attention at the initial early young age of 22. Born in Bayombong, Nueva Vizcaya, Philippines and raised in the thriving multicultural metropolis of LA, CA, he began studying an array of dance styles at age 13.
Norbert is interested in exploring the dimensions, physicality, and expressive nuances of neo-classical ballet and discovering the textural possibilities of contemporary and modern dance. He is fascinated in the exploratory compromise between these two stylistic worlds; complementing the rise and fall in one another.
Diligently trained at diverse venues and schools, Norbert was privately coached in Cecetti and Vagonova techniques by the generosity and kind faith of renowned Ballet Masters Vera Ninkovic and Marat Daukayev. His eclectic training includes the Gabriella Foundation in LA, LA County High School for the Arts, PAC Annex, Marat Daukayev School of Ballet, and graduated from The Juilliard School, under Lawrence Rhodes (2010), with a Bachelors degree in Fine Arts. (Norbert has attended Summer Intensive programs at American Ballet Theatre NYC, San Francisco Ballet, Miami City Ballet, LINES, Northwest Professional Dance Project, and NDT Summer Dans Course,) Subsequently, he has performed and delivered works by some of our times’ most influential choreographers - José Limón, David Parker, Adam Hougland, Johannes Wieland, Ohad Naharin, Aszure Barton, Jerome Robbins, Larry Keigwin, Jiri Pikorny, Hernando Fernando Magedan, Spenser Theberge, Andrea Miller, Jeremy McQueen, Camille A. Browne, Dwight Rhoden, Desmond Richardson, Lightfoot & Leon, Crystal Pite, Alonzo King, Zachary Tang, Gregory Dawson and Jirí Kylián.
Discovered at the 2010 Juilliard Senior Production choreographic show in NYC, Norbert was further mentored and revealed by esteemed Aspen Santa Fe Ballet (ASFB) Directors, Tom Mossbrucker and Jean-Philippe Malaty. His choreographic career was further recognized through the kind support of the Jerome Robbins Foundation’s NEW Essential Works Grant (2012), commissioning his first large-scale ballet, “Square None” (2012) with ASFB.
As a result of his extensive contemporary and classical training, he has performed professionally as a soloist in the Metropolitan Opera House's production of "Aida," Aszure Barton & Artists in Germany & Austria (Blue Soup & Busk), Balletto Teatro di Torino (Italy), Sydney Skybetter & Associates, Santa Clarita Ballet's "Midsummer Night's Dream", Lustig Dance Theatre, Aspen Santa Fe Ballet, Gallim (Lacoste Promo), Complexions Contemporary Ballet and represented the Juilliard School at Kodak Theatre’s first annual Dizzy Feet Foundation Gala in Hollywood, CA. Norbert has temporarily forgone his performance career in 2014/15– permitting him to gain creative clarity and to steer his focus for choreography and movement invention.
Among his personal and professional achievements Norbert was a finalist of Hubbard Street’s National Choreographic Competition (2013), a Princess Grace Foundation-USA Award under the choreography fellowship (2012), Alvin Ailey New Directions Choreography Lab (2013), finalist for the Joffrey Academy of Dance's 2014 Choreographer of Color Award, and a recipient for the 2015 National Choreographic Initiative choreographer in Irvine, CA. He was recently selected for the 2017 Spring Sessions at the New York Choreographic Institute, an affiliate of New York City Ballet, where he created his "Lunar" ballet working alongside Juilliard Composer, Nathan Prillaman. In this special workshop residency, Norbert had the honor of working and choreographing on the New York City Ballet dancers and advanced students from the School of American Ballet.
Norbert , now 28 years of age, has since been commissioned to create and premier new works for established companies such as Aspen Santa Fe Ballet, Hubbard Street 2, Joffrey Academy of Dance, James Sewell Ballet, Tulsa Ballet II, Barak Ballet, and has collaborated with San Francisco based composer, Benjamin Juodvalkis, in "Talsikan," for BalletX. Norbert has premiered his works at some of our nations most recognized venues such as Wolf Trap (VA), Ailey CitiGroup Theatre (NY), Martha Knoebel Dance Theatre (CA), Joyce Theatre (NY), Peter Jay Sharp Theatre (NY), Blanch Touhill Performing Arts Center (MO), Aspen District Theatre (CO), Lensic Performing Arts Center (NM), Wallis Annenberg (CA), the Broadway Playhouse (IL), Irvine Barclay Theatre (CA). His additional choreographic & teaching credentials include The Juilliard School Summer, The Alvin Ailey School/Fordham University, Princeton University Ballet, University of Hartford Dance Division, The University of Richmond Dept of Theatre and Dance, SUNY Purchase Conservatory of Dance, Marymount Manhattan College, NJ Performing Arts Center/SYPW, Ramon C. Cortines Visual and Performing Arts High School, Windward School for the Arts, Westside Dance Project, Hawkins School for the Arts, Northern California Dance Conservatory, YAGP, Charles Maple Youth Conservatory, No.OneArthouse, and conducts seasonal workshops and projects in both New York City and Los Angeles.
Norbert continues to pursue and preach his passion in choreography and movement in the diverse worlds of (neo)classical and contemporary Ballet, both empowering and fusing a unique vocabulary for ever-evolving new generation of contemporary dance - reflecting, sharing, and communicating his philosophies to artists nationwide, with a high emphasis on his work as a means to manifest positive social change in the world of concert dance.
* READ ABOUT NORBERT'S PHOTOGRAPHIC PURSUIT HERE
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