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- I am not the first straight dancer, nor the last.
- There comes a moment in a young artist's life when he knows he has to bring something to the stage from within himself. He has to put in something in order to be able to take something out.
- I do not try to dance better than anyone else. I only try to to dance better than myself.
- The essence of all art is to have pleasure in giving pleasure.
- [on the late Fred Astaire] "No dancer can watch him and not know that all the rest of us should be in a different business. Astaire is remote. It's as if he were in an incubator, breathing his own air. His perfection is like crystal: you can see through it. It's hopeless to try and imitate him."
- "No one is born a dancer. You have to want it more than anything."
- "No matter what I try to do or explore, my Kirov training, my expertise, and my background call me to return to dancing after all, because that's my real vocation, and I have to serve it."
- "Dancers are made, not born."
- "That somebody has the vision to put a few steps together and make a dance out of it, there is already a certain power implanted. My job is much easier - it's just to put a light in it."
- "Oh, that's nonsense. Sex symbol? A cup of tea will do it. Sex is overrated. Absolutely. Forget about it. A good golf game, a nice conversation with friends, will do better." - On what it is like to be an international sex symbol.
- [on being directed by Dmitry Krymov in a play, 2011] "I myself didn't agree with many of his choices. But I am not entitled to raise my objections. It's the same with a choreographer. If you commit, you should be a good foot soldier. This is not the place to be a general."
- [on the difficulty of acting in front of the camera, encountered while working on _White Nights (1985)_, and the help he received from acting coach Sandra Seacat, whom he'd met earlier through Jessica Lange, from 12/6/85 Washington Post profile] "One of the main things was she helped me relax in front of the camera. The best acting I did on the set was in the improvisations before the takes - that gave me real satisfaction. But keeping the level when the camera was going, that was completely something else. Technicians placing the camera, the director behind you, your throat is dry, and you're trying to forget everything, all distractions, and ask yourself what is this scene really about - that's when the hard work starts."