All-male dance troupe BalletBoyz coming to Long Beach

Q How was BalletBoyz formed?A Many of our early commissions were duets for the two of us (Trevitt and Nunn), and when we got older and stiffer and less able to dance beautifully we thought there was still something interesting to explore with men dancing together. So we thought what we would do is expand our horizons, employ more dancers that were all male and to see whether that would be of interest to audiences and choreographers. We only ever imagined it would be a sort of experiment, but it seemed so popular with both audiences and choreographers that we’re still in that format. Here are edited excerpts from our conversation with BalletBoyz co-founder William Trevitt, who spoke to us via phone from the company’s home in London.

I think everywhere we go we have lots of male dancers in the audience come to see the show, and I think it can be very inspirational for them. I think you’ll quite often find that if you’re a young man doing dance, you’re possibly the only one in your dance school. You don’t know many others so to see the potential of an entire company of young men dancing on the stage is very powerful.Q How would you describe the show at Carpenter Center? Q Do you think the troupe can inspire more boys to take up ballet?A Absolutely.
SaturdayWhere: The Carpenter Center, 6200 E. Atherton St., Long Beach. Tickets: $50 and up.Information: 562-985-7000 and When: 8 p.m.

Q How did you come up with the name?A We were still dancers with the Royal Ballet, and we decided to buy a video camera and make a documentary; a fly on the wall video diary about our lives as classical ballet dancers. There’s something about that connection they share that I think it’s the strongest thing you see onstage. … The TV production company said, “We’re going to call it ‘Ballet Boyz’ with a Z,” and we thought that was a stupid name. They said if we came up with anything else to let them know and we didn’t get around to it …and it just stuck.Q What does an all-male company bring to dance?A I think in our case it’s less significant that it’s all male and more that we have this very particular, very close-knit group of dancers.

After spending 12 years with The Royal Ballet, classically trained dancers Michael Nunn and William Trevitt were ambitious and hungry for a chance to create more contemporary work. So the pair joined forces and formed their own company, dubbed the BalletBoyz in 2000.Since then, the London based all-male contemporary company has grown to 10 dancers and regularly tours the UK and the world. Their next stop is at the Carpenter Center on Jan. 28,when they will perform a piece called “Life,” which combines the work of respected choreographers Javier De Frutos and Pontus Lidberg.