Famous Male Ballet Dancers

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List of famous male ballet dancers, listed by their level of prominence with photos when available. This greatest male ballet dancers list contains the most prominent and top males known for being ballet dancers. Ballet fans will also enjoy our lists of famous female ballerinas and celebrities who danced ballet. There are thousand of males working as ballet dancers in the world, but this list highlights only the most notable ones. Historic ballet dancers have worked hard to become the best that they can be, so if you're a male aspiring to be a ballet dancer then the people below should give you inspiration.

Examples of male ballerinas (ballerinos) on this list include Rudolf Nureyev, Mikail Baryshnikov, and more. Featuring the most popular Russian, English, and other male ballet dancers, this list has many recognizable names. 

While this isn't a list of all male ballet dancers, it does answer the questions "Who are the most famous male ballet dancers?" and "Who are the best male ballet dancers?"

Rudolf Nureyev is listed (or ranked) 1 on the list Famous Male Ballet Dancers
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Rudolf Khametovich Nureyev was a Soviet-born dancer of ballet and modern dance, one of the most celebrated of the 20th century. Nureyev's artistic skills explored expressive areas of the dance, providing a new role to the male ballet dancer who once served only as support to the women. Nureyev defected from the Soviet Union to the West in 1961, despite KGB efforts to stop him. ...more on Wikipedia

Age: Died at 55 (1938-1993)

Birthplace: Eurasia, Russia, Irkutsk

Nationality: Austria, United Kingdom, Russia

Profession: Ballet Dancer, Ballet master, Screenwriter, Choreographer, Actor, + more

Schools: Vaganova Ballet Academy, Mariinsky Ballet

Credits: Valentino, Don Quixote, Exposed, Romeo and Juliet, I am a Dancer, + more

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Vaslav Nijinsky is listed (or ranked) 2 on the list Famous Male Ballet Dancers
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Vaslav Nijinsky was a Russian ballet dancer and choreographer of Polish descent, cited as the greatest male dancer of the early 20th century. He was celebrated for his virtuosity and for the depth and intensity of his characterizations. He could dance en pointe, a rare skill among male dancers at the time and was admired for his seemingly gravity-defying leaps. Nijinsky was introduced to dance by his parents, who were senior dancers with the travelling Setov opera company, and his early childhood was spent touring with the company. His older brother Stanislav Fomitch and younger sister Bronislava Nijinska also became dancers. At age nine Nijinsky was accepted at the Imperial Ballet School in ...more on Wikipedia

Age: Dec. at 60 (1890-1950)

Birthplace: Kiev, Ukraine

Nationality: Ukraine

Profession: Ballet Dancer, Choreographer

Schools: Vaganova Ballet Academy

Credits: The Diaries of Vaslav Nijinsky

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Mikhail Baryshnikov is listed (or ranked) 3 on the list Famous Male Ballet Dancers
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Mikhail Nikolayevich Baryshnikov, nicknamed "Misha", is a Russian-American dancer, choreographer, and actor born in the Soviet Union, often cited alongside Vaslav Nijinsky and Rudolf Nureyev as one of the greatest ballet dancers in history. After a promising start in the Kirov Ballet in Leningrad, he defected to Canada in 1974 for more opportunities in western dance. After freelancing with many companies, he joined the New York City Ballet as a principal dancer to learn George Balanchine's style of movement. He then danced with the American Ballet Theatre, where he later became artistic director. Baryshnikov has spearheaded many of his own artistic projects and has been associated in ...more on Wikipedia

Age: 67

Birthplace: Riga, Latvia

Nationality: United States of America, Russia

Profession: Ballet Dancer, Television producer, Choreographer, Actor

Schools: Vaganova Ballet Academy

Credits: Sex and the City, The Turning Point, White Nights, Great Performances, Company Business, + more

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Anthony Dowell is listed (or ranked) 4 on the list Famous Male Ballet Dancers
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Sir Anthony James Dowell, CBE is a retired British ballet dancer and a former Artistic Director of The Royal Ballet. Dowell was one of the great premiers danseurs nobles of the twentieth century and the natural heir at the Royal Ballet to the classical tradition established by Harold Turner and Michael Somes. ...more on Wikipedia

Age: 76

Birthplace: England, London

Profession: Ballet master

Schools: Royal Ballet School

Credits: Valentino, Royal Ballet School: Prokofiev's Peter and the Wolf, Highlights From the Royal Ballet, Swan Lake: The Royal Ballet, Natasha: Natalia Makarova, + more

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