Christopher Wheeldon (1973, Somerset, England) danced with The Royal Ballet and New York City Ballet. He was also associated with the latter company as a resident choreographer from 2001 to 2008.
Wheeldon trained at The Royal Ballet School, joining The Royal Ballet in London in 1991 and winning a gold medal at the Prix de Lausanne, a competition for young dancers. Two years later, he was invited to dance with New York City Ballet, where he was promoted to second soloist in 1998.
In 1997, Wheeldon choreographed his first work, Slavonic Dances, for New York City Ballet's Diamond Project. This was followed by creations for the School of American Ballet and the fiftieth anniversary of New York City Ballet.
In 2000, Wheeldon stopped dancing in order to focus on his career as a choreographer. He spent one year as a regular guest choreographer with New York City Ballet and was appointed resident choreographer with the company in 2001, creating a great many ballets in this capacity.
Nowadays, Wheeldon is one of the most sought-after ballet choreographers in the world. For instance, he has created works for The Royal Ballet, San Francisco Ballet, Pennsylvania Ballet, The Metropolitan Opera and the Bolshoi Ballet. He also collaborated on the film Center Stage (2000) and on a theatre version of the Broadway show Sweet Smell of Success (2002).
In 2007, along with former New York City Ballet principal Lourdes Lopez, the British choreographer founded his own company: Morphoses / The Wheeldon Company. The aim was to give a new impulse to classical ballet through intensive collaboration with artists from a variety of disciplines. For the opening season of this company, Wheeldon created Fool's Paradise and Prokofiev Pas de Deux.
In 2005, Wheeldon received the Dance Magazine Award and the London Critics' Circle Award in the category 'Best New Ballet' for Polyphonia, for which the dancers of New York City Ballet received the Laurence Olivier Award. In 2006, DGV (Danse à Grande Vitesse) was nominated for an Olivier Award. Wheeldon has also been presented with the American Choreography Award. He was recently made an Honorary Fellow of the American Academy of Arts and Sciences 2012.