One NY Artist: Choreographer Takehiro Ueyama

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Takehiro Ueyama

There are thousands of artists in New York City. Some are famous internationally. Others are scratching out a living while perfecting their craft in basements or on stage. WNYC is bringing a few of them to the spotlight, in their own voices.

Here, choreographer Takehiro Ueyama. He is the founder and artistic director of TAKE Dance.

Uyeama grew up in Japan, and came to New York City in 1991 to study dance at Julliard school. But in the beginning he wasn't a dedicated student. "I didn't listen, I had a bad attitude," he said. "I got three Fs for a semester, they almost kicked me out."

Uyeama ended up graduating, and then joined the Paul Taylor company as probably the first male Japanese American in the group, he said. "Every place I go I might be the first Japanese guy, but I don't really have the problem, me as an Asian," he said. "I think it's an advantage, because I am different." He performed with them for eight years.

TAKE Dance is presenting new works next Friday and Saturday, the 27th and 28th, at Symphony Space.

To listen to the whole piece about Ueyama, click on the audio link above.

(Photo by Phil Echo)