William Forsythe (born December 30, 1949 in New York City) is an American dancer and choreographer resident in Frankfurt am Main in Hessen. He is known internationally for his work with the Ballet Frankfurt (1984–2004) and The Forsythe Company (2005–present). Recognized for the integration of ballet and visual arts, his vision of choreography as an organizational practice has inspired him to produce numerous installations, films, and web-based knowledge creation.
William Forsythe began his professional career as an apprentice with the Joffrey Ballet in 1971 before following his then wife, Eileen Brady, to join the Stuttgart Ballet in 1973. Encouraged by the director, Marcia Haydée, Forsythe began choreographing works for the company and was appointed Resident Choreographer in 1976. During the next seven years he created original works for the Stuttgart Ensemble, and for ballet companies in Munich, The Hague, London, Basel, Berlin, Frankfurt am Main, Paris, New York, and San Francisco. In 1984 he was appointed director of the Ballet Frankfurt. After the closure of Ballet Frankfurt in 2004, he founded the Forsythe Company with the support of the states of Saxony and Hesse, the cities of Dresden and Frankfurt am Main, and private sponsors. The Forsythe Company is based in Dresden and Frankfurt am Main.
Forsythe has produced and collaborated on numerous installation works, including White Bouncy Castle (1997, in collaboration with Dana Caspersen and Joel Ryan), City of Abstracts (2000), Scattered Crowd (2002), airdrawing|whenever on on on nohow on (2004, collaborating with Peter Welz), and You made me a monster (2005). Installation works by Forsythe have been shown at the Louvre Museum, Venice Biennale, the Renaissance Society in Chicago, and other locations. Forsythe has been commissioned to produce architectural and performance installations by architect-artist Daniel Libeskind, ARTANGEL (London), Creative Time (New York), and the City of Paris.
In 2014, Forsythe announced he will join the University of Southern California’s newly created Glorya Kaufman School of Dance as a professor in fall 2015, when its first Bachelor of Fine Arts dance majors will begin attending; he will spend six to eight weeks a year at the university in Los Angeles.