I never studied with Balanchine, but his work was very important to me.
Walt Disney was a master of the human psychology. His sense of timing, sense of speed. In a sense, those cartoons are like Rorschach tests.
Nobody worked harder than Mozart. By the time he was twenty-eight years old, his hands were deformed because of all the hours he had spent practicing, performing, and gripping a quill pen to compose. That's the missing element in the popular portrait of Mozart.
I'm obviously always interested in the dancer who's an athlete and vice versa. I expect dancers to be in condition like an athlete is and to challenge themselves in the same way, to the same physical degree.