Riley Watts


November 6, 2017 to November 13, 2017

Riley Watts

"Riley is not just a great teacher - he is one of the most skilled, talented and celebrated contemporary dancers around, and it just doesn’t come across. If you are a serious dance student at Duke you just wouldn’t want to miss this guy!" Michael Klien

We are happy to welcome out-standing dance artist Riley Watts, currently living in Portland, Maine.  He received a BFA in dance from The Juilliard School and since 2010 has worked primarily with choreographer William Forsythe and The Forsythe Company in Frankfurt, Germany, as well as with Netherlands Dance Theater 2, Bern Ballet, and Cedar Lake Contemporary Ballet. As a teaching artist, he is frequently invited internationally to teach improvisation and embodied dance thinking in arts and academic institutions, festivals, dance companies, and research platforms, most recently as a visiting artist at Princeton University, Colby College, and The Juilliard School, among many others. As a performer and dance maker, he has toured extensively to major theaters and museums across the world. In 2015 he was invited to perform alongside Sylvie Guillem on her Life in Progress farewell tour where he danced William Forsythe’s DUO2015 more than 60 times in 14 countries over 9 months.  As an interdisciplinary collaborator, he has published research on entrainment in Frontiers in Human Neuroscience, collaborated in research development with brain scientists in the UK, Germany, and Australia, and is the coauthor of a children’s book “Where’s Your Creativity?” .

Riley is a 2006 Princess Grace Award winner and was named Contemporary Dancers of the Year 2015, with Brigel Gjoka, by the Leonide Massine - Positano Prize, Italy, for their work in Forsythe’s DUO2015.

Open classes:

  • Monday, November 6, 3:00- 6:00PM, Hull Studio

  • Tuesday, November 7, 4:40- 6:10PM, the Ark

  • Friday, November 10, 10:05-11:35AM, the Ark