About Michael Blake
Michael Blake is a distinguished figure in the realm of dance, boasting a rich and multifaceted career that spans over three decades. Commencing his journey in 1982 with the Murray Louis Dance Company, where he performed until 1984, Michael's trajectory has been marked by significant milestones and collaborations.
In 1985, he ventured to Osaka, Japan, assuming the role of the manager at Studio Dancin'. The subsequent years saw him gracing the stage as a principal dancer with renowned companies such as the Jose Limon Dance Company from 1986 to 1991, and Donald Byrd/The Group from 1991 to 1998. Notably, Michael has also contributed his talents to esteemed groups including Wylliams/Henry Contemporary Dance Company, PARADIGM Dance, Joyce Trisler Danscompany, Shapiro and Smith, and Netta Yerushalmy. His theatrical repertoire extends to Vinnette Carroll’s production, "What You Gonna Name That Pretty Little Baby?" choreographed by Talley Beatty.
Michael's impact in the world of dance extends beyond live performances, encompassing notable appearances in films such as "The Tales of Cri Cri" (Murray Louis/Alwin Nikolais), "Unsettled Dreams" (Donald Byrd), and the documentary "Hanya Holm (Portrait of a Dance Pioneer)." He has also been a touring presence, joining Cab Calloway in "Cab Calloway's Cotton Club Review" and participating in the Public Theater's rock musical, "Lenny and the Heartbreakers."
A luminary in the realm of dance education, Michael has conducted workshops nationally and internationally, leaving an indelible mark on aspiring dancers. Serving as the Artistic Director of the Jazz and Contemporary Trainee Program at the Joffrey Ballet School from 2011 to 2017, he has shared his expertise at esteemed institutions such as Steps on Broadway, Peridance Capezio Center, Ballet Hispanico, and the Mark Morris Dance Group in New York City. Michael has been an influential faculty member at Hunter College, Purchase College, Mason Gross School of the Arts, Marymount Manhattan College, and Ithaca College.
In 2018, Michael took center stage at TEDXasburypark, captivating audiences with his insights on the theme of "PASSION," embodying the essence of dance beyond the age of 50. His dedication to the art form is further highlighted in the HBO Max Documentary, "Uprooted – The Journey of Jazz Dance."
Currently holding the position of Assistant Professor of Modern Dance at the University of Missouri-Kansas City, Michael Blake stands as a proud member of the Actor's Equity Association. With an MFA in dance from Purchase College and a distinguished 2010 Bessie Award for Dance and Performance for his contributions to PARADIGM Dance, he continues to shape the landscape of dance through his unwavering commitment and artistic brilliance.
My Boy Max