A Day in the Life: Justin Peck

With his latest narrative ballet, “The Most Incredible Thing,” Justin Peck has attracted a fresh wave of followers to this classic art form.

“Dance is sort of a flawed medium because you can’t use words: It’s a very specific parameter for storytelling”

Justin Peck is slumped in a chair along the mirrored wall of a practice room in the labyrinthine warren of offices, costume shops and studios that lies beneath New York City Ballet. He sits perfectly still watching a dancer move across the floor before suddenly standing and exploding into motion. “Try it like this, maybe,” he says softly while leaping through the air, his hesitant voice at odds with the sureness of his motions. Then, just as quickly as he started, he quietly sits back down with a preternatural grace, once again wrapped in stillness.

With his arms propped up on the practice barre, Justin’s leanly muscled dancer’s frame gives him a slightly gangly appearance at rest. Paired with his tousled brown hair, he looks almost boyish sitting in the brightly lit rehearsal r...

ISSUE 52

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