David Hallberg: Ballet’s New Crossover Superstar?
May has been a very busy month for American Ballet Theatre principal David Hallberg. In case returning to the NY stage after a two year absence to dance the lead role of Prince Coffee in Ratmansky’s Whipped Cream wasn’t enough, Hallberg recently shared that he’s publishing a memoir. Oh, and he’s the new face of Nike.
Hallberg’s memoir, A Body of Work: Dancing to the Edge and Back, which will be published by Touchstone, an imprint of Simon & Schuster, is set to come out on November 7. The book will cover the ups and downs of his career, from the Bolshoi to ABT to recovering from a severe ankle injury. There’s a long history of ballet dancers writing memoirs, most recently Michaela DePrince’s 2014 Taking Flight (also newly the face of a major sportswear company). Memoir helps establish a dancer’s celebrity and immortalize their stories, and it certainly seems that Hallberg has garnered enough success in the past few years to fall in line with those before him. Nike certainly thinks so…
Women’s Wear Daily announced last week that Hallberg will model for NikeLab’s latest campaign in a series of photo and video ads that will run from June 1-10 in a New York City exhibition called “Objects of Desire,” showcasing 20 years of Nike campaigns featuring athletes who have given “a unique voice to sport.” It’s exciting to see ballet on such a major platform, but considering Hallberg an athlete raises the ever-present debate of whether ballet is art or sport (though we suppose both is an option as well.)
Check out this preview video of Hallberg in NikeLab’s ACG Poncho: