Fluid but solid, subtle but confident: Michael Trusnovec is a man of many contradictions. That’s probably why he can play both a ruthless killer in Paul Taylor’s Banquet of Vultures and a lovable nerd in Taylor’s Company B with equal prowess. But the longtime Fred Astaire fan’s first love was tap dancing, which he began studying in his hometown of Yaphank, NY. He first discovered modern dance—and fell head over heels for Taylor’s choreography—when he was offered a full dance scholarship to Southern Methodist University in Dallas. In 1996, Michael earned a spot in Taylor 2, and by 1998 he was promoted to the senior company. Since then he’s danced many of Taylor’s best-loved pieces, earning a 2006 New York Dance and Performance Award (a “Bessie”) for his body of work with PTDC. —Margaret Fuhrer
How often have I thought, If I only knew then what I know now? Much has happened since then, so its strangely difficult to sift through it all to give you some useful insights.
Learn to accept your slightly (OK, maybe not so slightly) compulsive perfectionism. Its not going to go away, and it’ll become a valuable trait that keeps you humble.
Trust that wise ballet teacher when she refuses to allow you to quit taking ballet classes. Somehow, she knows that you’ll need the strength, line and agility that a solid foundation in ballet will give you.
Above all, recognize that all of your experiences are special.
Savor every moment onstage and in the studio, every perfect and not so perfect pirouette, every criticism and every word of praise.
P.S. Make that wager with Dad when he offers to buy you a car if you’re able to secure a scholarship to college. It’s going to pay off!