Justin Peck

Justin Peck (born September 8, 1987) is an American choreographer, director, and dancer associated with New York City Ballet, of which he was appointed Resident Choreographer in July 2014, being the second person in the history of the institution to hold this title.[1] In 2018 he won the Tony Award for Best Choreography for his work on the third Broadway revival of Rodgers and Hammerstein's Carousel.

Justin Peck
Born (1987-09-08) September 8, 1987
EducationSchool of American Ballet
OccupationChoreographer, dancer
Years active2006–present
Current groupNew York City Ballet

Early life

Peck was born in Washington, D.C., and grew up in San Diego, California. He began tap dancing when he was nine years old, after seeing a performance of Bring in 'da Noise. When Peck was 13, he witnessed a performance of American Ballet Theatre in Giselle which inspired him to begin training in the ballet form.


At 15 years old, Peck moved to New York City to attend the School of American Ballet. In 2006, when he was 18 years old, he was invited by Peter Martins to join the New York City Ballet as an apprentice.[2] In June 2007, he was promoted to corps de ballet. In February 2013, he was promoted to soloist.[3] At New York City Ballet, Peck has danced extensive repertoire, performing in existing and new works by George Balanchine, Jerome Robbins, Peter Martins, Benjamin Millepied, Alexei Ratmansky, Lynne Taylor-Corbett, and Christopher Wheeldon.

In 2008, Peck choreographed his first ballet. He has since created more than 25 works, for companies such as New York City Ballet, San Francisco Ballet, Pacific Northwest Ballet,[4] Miami City Ballet,[5] LA Dance Project,[6] and Paris Opera Ballet.

Alastair Macaulay, the chief dance critic at The New York Times, described Peck in an article as "the third important choreographer to have emerged in classical ballet this century."[1] In 2014, Peck was named the New York City Ballet's Resident Choreographer, the youngest and only the second ever to hold the position.[7]

Peck is the focus of the 2014 Jody Lee Lipes documentary Ballet 422.[8]

Peck has worked with composers Sufjan Stevens, Bryce Dessner (of the band The National), Steve Reich, and Philip Glass. He has also collaborated with visual artists Shepard Fairey, Marcel Dzama, Sterling Ruby, Karl Jensen; and fashion designers Humberto Leon (Opening Ceremony, Kenzo), Mary Katrantzou, and Prabal Gurung.

He has contributed to the fashion world, working with Vogue,[9] Harper's Bazaar,[10] Nowness,[11] Vogue China, Vogue Australia, DuJour magazine,[12] Vulture,[13] New York Magazine, and others.

The New York Times has proclaimed that "Mr. Peck has quickly become the most eminent choreographer of ballet in the United States,"[14] and that "young Mr. Peck can do anything he wants with choreography: a virtuoso of the form."[15]

Peck provided the choreography for the third Broadway revival of Rodgers and Hammerstein's Carousel in 2018 at the Imperial Theatre.[16] Peck has received numerous award nominations for his work on the production including a Tony Award for Best Choreography.

Ballet 422

Ballet 422 follows Peck's process of choreographing Paz de la Jolla for the New York City Ballet.[8]

In the film, Peck's process of creating the piece is followed, focusing on aspects such as choreography, staging, lighting, and costumes.[7][17] The movie was filmed and directed by Jody Lee Lipes, an American cinematographer known for his cinematography in the television show Girls and film Manchester by the Sea.[17][18]

Awards and nominations

  • In 2013, Peck's Year of the Rabbit was a nomination for the Benois De La Danse.
  • In 2015, Peck's Rodeo: Four Dance Episodes received a Bessie Award for Outstanding Production.[19] This work received a nomination for the Benois De La Danse in 2016.
  • Peck was awarded the 2018 Tony Award for Best Choreography for Rodger's and Hammerstein's Carousel[20]
  • Peck was awarded the 2018 Drama Desk Award for Outstanding Choreography for Rodger's and Hammerstein's Carousel
  • Peck was awarded the 2018 Outer Critics Circle Award for Rodger's and Hammerstein's Carousel
  • Peck was awarded the 2018 Ted Arison Young Arts Awards at the National Arts Awards.
  • Peck received the Golden Plate from the Academy of Achievement in 2019.

Selected works

  • Year of the Rabbit (2012) – New York City Ballet
  • In Creases (2012) – New York City Ballet
  • Paz De La Jolla (2013) – New York City Ballet
  • Chutes and Ladders (2013) – Miami City Ballet
  • Capricious Maneuvers (2013) – New York City Ballet
  • Murder Ballades (2013) – LA Dance Project
  • Everywhere We Go (2014) – New York City Ballet
  • Belles-Lettres (2014) – New York City Ballet
  • Debonair (2014) – Pacific Northwest Ballet
  • Helix (2014) – LA Dance Project
  • Rodeo: Four Dance Episodes (2015) – New York City Ballet
  • Heatscape (2015) – Miami City Ballet
  • New Blood (2015) – New York City Ballet
  • The Most Incredible Thing (2016) – New York City Ballet[21]
  • In the Countenance of Kings (2016) – San Francisco Ballet
  • Entre chien et loup (2016) – Paris Opera Ballet
  • Scherzo Fantastique (2016) -New York City Ballet [22]
  • The Dreamers (2016) – New York City Ballet
  • The Times Are Racing (2017) – New York City Ballet
  • The Decalogue (2017) - New York City Ballet
  • Pulcinella Variations (2017) – New York City Ballet[23]
  • Hurry Up We're Dreaming (2018) - San Francisco Ballet
  • Easy (2018) - New York City Ballet [24]
  • Principia (2019) - New York City Ballet [25]
  • Reflections (2019) - Houston Ballet


  1. Sulcas, Roslyn (9 July 2014). "New York City Ballet Names Justin Peck as Choreographer". The New York Times. ISSN 0362-4331. Retrieved 6 October 2015.
  2. Wakin, Daniel J. (10 June 2006). "Tapping Dancers for Ballet Company". The New York Times. ISSN 0362-4331. Retrieved 6 October 2015.
  3. "Justin Peck and Teresa Reichlen in Concerto Barocco". www.nycballet.com. Retrieved 6 October 2015.
  4. Kourlas, Gia (10 October 2014). "Pacific Northwest Ballet Presents Debonair". The New York Times. ISSN 0362-4331. Retrieved 6 October 2015.
  5. "Heatscape". Miami City Ballet. Retrieved 6 October 2015.
  6. Kourlas, Gia (20 August 2015). "Review: L.A. Dance Project's Tale of Murder, Sprightly and With Sneakers". The New York Times. ISSN 0362-4331. Retrieved 6 October 2015.
  7. Taylor, Ella. "Ballet 422 Is a Dance Documentary Long on Art, Not Drama".
  8. 422/ Justin Peck on IMDb
  9. "Justin Peck Heatscape Video" Vogue
  10. "Dance of Dior" Harper's Bazaar
  11. "Janie Taylor for Chloe" nowness.com
  12. Schaefer, Brian (12 April 2014). "Pliés & Thank You". DuJour. DuJour Media.
  13. "How Boy Wonder Justin Peck Is Upturning Ballet". Vulture. 29 January 2015. Retrieved 10 July 2018.
  14. Macaulay, Alastair (29 March 2015). "Review: Miami City Ballet in Heatscape, a Fleeting Chase of Romance". The New York Times. ISSN 0362-4331. Retrieved 7 October 2015.
  15. Macaulay, Alastair (9 May 2014). "New York City Ballet Opens Season With Gala". The New York Times. ISSN 0362-4331. Retrieved 7 October 2015.
  16. "Carousel Revival" The New York Times, April 16, 2017
  17. "'Ballet 422' Is A Dance Documentary Long On Art, Not Drama". NPR.org. Retrieved 10 July 2018.
  18. Desowitz, Bill (18 November 2016). "'Manchester By the Sea': How Kenneth Lonergan & Crew Made a Non-Linear Masterpiece". IndieWire. Retrieved 10 July 2018.
  19. "Winners Announced for New York Dance and Performance Awards, aka The Bessies". artforum.com. Retrieved 20 October 2015.
  20. Staff. "2018 Tony Award Nominations: SpongeBob SquarePants and Mean Girls Lead the Pack", Playbill, May 1, 2018
  21. The Most Incredible Thing nycbattet.com
  22. https://www.nycballet.com/ballets/s/scherzo-fantastique-peck.aspx
  23. nycballet.com
  24. https://www.nycballet.com/ballets/e/easy-new-peck-spring-2018.aspx
  25. https://www.nycballet.com/ballets/p/principia-new-peck-1.aspx
New York City Ballet
Preceded by
Christopher Wheeldon
Resident Choreographer
Succeeded by
Current holder
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