Thursday, March 27, 2008

Alexander Kølpin


Alexander Kølpin

Alexander Kølpin is a Danish star of film, the stage, and the ballet. He danced with the Royal Danish Ballet, in Bournonville Ballets, and guest starred with several other ballet companies. While injury forced Kølpin into an early retirement from dance, his life still revolves around the art and he is currently the artistic director of the Copenhagen International Ballet. Here he tells ASW about his many passions and his next big project.

Q. How do you use ASW and what’s your favorite site feature?
Alexander Kølpin : I use it when I have to travel, especially for restaurants and hotels. I like the rating system and I mostly look at the individual comments.

Q. At what age did you know you wanted to dance?
AK: When I was 10. I came straight from a soccer match to see my sister do a ballet class. And I believe it moved me right away because all the things that I was interested in were represented in this one room; movement, music, physicality, grace and drama, all embodied in one vocabulary.

Q. What has been the greatest moment of your career thus far?
AK: Dancing ‘James,’ the lead in La Sylphide; first in Copenhagen and again later at the Sydney Opera House.

Q. Is dance in your blood?
AK: No, my mother is a designer for cloth, my father an architect.

Q. You’re in the Danish stage production of the Full Monty. Do you get your gear off?
AK: Not completely (Full Monty-style) but it was a great experience to be a stripper and do a ten minute solo strip to open the show.

Q. You performed in several Bournonville Ballets. For the ballet-ignorant among us, what is unique about Bournonville?
AK: That his ballets are always about people and the characters. It’s demanding in the technique, but first and foremost it is a portrait of personalities.

Q. What are you doing in the way of TV and film these days?
AK: I did a short film last year and am now shooting a documentary on my father-in-law, Peter Zobel (a retired business tycoon in the insurance industry).

Q. An injury forced you into early retirement from dance. How did you cope with that disappointment?
AK: I have been injured many times in my career – it is a part of being professional and working hard. I had to stop for a year, but recovered and left the Royal Danish Ballet to work with Maurice Bejart in Lausanne. After that I moved to New York and worked with Twyla Tharp. Then moved back to Denmark and stopped dancing.

Q. Tell us about your next big project?
AK: My documentary and planning next summer’s dance performances.

Q. What makes you happiest?
AK: To travel, eat, listen to music, the ocean, friends and my kids. And work when I am with cool people.

Q. Where is your favorite travel destination?
AK: Paris and Mallorca

Q. What is your favorite hotel?
AK: Plaza Athénée, Paris

Q. What is your favorite restaurant?
AK: Le Stresa (Paris), Oubaek (Copenhagen),

Q. What is your favorite museum or gallery?
AK: Moma (NY), Whitney (NY), Rodin (Paris)

Q. What is your favorite beach?
AK: Blacks Beach (La Jolla, California), 7 Mile Beach (Byron Bay, Australia), Hornbaek (Denmark)

Q. What is your favorite restaurant?
AK: Le Stresa (Paris), Oubaek (Copenhagen)

Q. What is your favorite museum or gallery?
AK: The MOMA in Paris

Q. What film has had the greatest effect on you? Why?
AK: Girl on the Bridge (touching and honest acting; great story about human relationships)

Q. What is your favorite ski resort?
AK: Verbier (Swizerland)

Q. What cause is closest to your heart? Why?
AK: Children in need, because they are vulnerable and bear no responsibility for what we are doing to the world around them.

Q. What’s one thing you would like to change about yourself?
AK: To be less self-aware and more patient.

Q. Which artist do you admire most?
AK: Whoa… Picasso or Igor Stravinsky. My favorite living artist has to be choreographer Jiri Kylian.

Q. What’s the craziest thing you’ve ever done?
AK: Not a good idea to share it.

Q. Who is your favorite historical figure?
AK: Not historical as such, but the Dalai Lama

Q. What upsets you the most?
AK: Stupid and lazy people who do not take action but expect respect without contributing.

Q. What is your favorite bar?
AK: Plaza Athénée (Paris)

Q. What gadget can’t you live without?
AK: My iPhone and my Mac.

Q. What are you most afraid of?
AK: Not being healthy and lose my loved ones.

Q. What’s your favorite drink?
AK: Beer

Q. What are your top 3 songs?
AK: 'Love Me or Leave Me’ by Nina Simone, ‘Adagietto,’ Mahler’s Symphony No. 5, ‘Somewhere Over the Rainbow’ sung by Israel Kamakawiwo'ole.

— Laura Jakobovits

Labels: , , ,


Post a Comment

Subscribe to Post Comments [Atom]

<< Home