Etienne Lavigne was born in Montréal, Québec and trained at L'École supérieure de ballet du Québec in Montréal, San Francisco Ballet School in California and Ballet Nacional de Cuba. He joined The National Ballet of Canada in 1997, became a Principal Character Artist in 2015 and a Guest Principal Character Artist in 2020.
“If anyone dominated the evening it was Etienne Lavigne, not only dancing superbly throughout – and Kudelka's Swan Lake gives a lot of the heavy lifting to Rothbart – but injecting the role with palpable malice.”
Etienne's repertoire includes Tybalt in Romeo and Juliet, Rothbart in Swan Lake, Peter/The Nutcracker in The Nutcracker, Hilarion in Giselle, King Florestan in The Sleeping Beauty, Camille in The Merry Widow and Father in Marguerite and Armand. He has also danced principal roles in Song of the Earth, Elite Syncopations, Glass Pieces, Désir and Musings as well as lead roles in Don Quixote, Onegin, The Taming of the Shrew, The Winter’s Tale, The Merry Widow, The Firebird, Madame Butterfly, The Seagull, Symphony in C, Polyphonia and Emergence.
Etienne was awarded the David Tory Award in 2009.
He is also Executive Director of the Festival des Arts de Saint-Sauveur, one of the largest summer dance festivals in the country.
Romeo and Juliet
“Etienne Lavigne's Tybalt has grown from mere swagger to a complex man of honour… [a] portrait of human frailty.”
— The Globe and Mail
“Etienne Lavigne, whose smoky malevolence as Tybalt crept over the footlights like a fog every time he puts a foot on stage.”
— Toronto Sun