Complexions Founders Desmond Richardson and Dwight Rhoden Reveal Their Next Step: Ballet Faculty at SMU

Photo by Kyle Froman

Desmond Richardson and Dwight Rhoden—former Ailey stars who founded their own company, Complexions Contemporary Ballet—just don't seem to stop. This fall and coming spring, they're teaching two classes at Southern Methodist University in Dallas, Texas: Advanced Ballet and Men's Ballet Technique.

Richardson at Marymount Manhattan College. Photo by Matthew Murphy

Both men have forged unusual paths for themselves (Rhoden, as a principal with Ailey and a choreographed commissioned by Dance Theatre of Harlem and "So You Think You Can Dance"; Richardson, as a principal with both Ailey and American Ballet Theatre), and their teaching styles reflect that. Rhoden's ballet classes are anything but average, and Richardson is all about teaching ballet vocabulary to competition kids. Their partnering style, too, has always been forward-thinking. With Complexions, they helped redefine the classical pas de deux.

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