Asian and Asian American ballet dancers: Chan Hon Goh

Chan Hon Goh, or 吴振红, was one of the first Asian-descent ballerinas that I came across in my first, sheepish days of exploring ballet. I was browsing around a local bookstore when I found her memoir Beyond the Dance, full of beautiful photographs of her dancing.

It was an interesting story to be sure: Goh had arrived in Canada in 1977, the only daughter of two Chinese ballet dancers. Her parents founded the famous Goh Ballet, and Goh herself climbed to fame as the winner of the 1986 Prix de Lausanne. She’s been with National Ballet of Canada since, and retired only last year. That’s a very brief summary. Beyond the Dance is worth a read; it’s written for young adults but any balletomane will love it.

Goh is so gorgeous; watch her footwork!

She’s also danced with the Suzanne Farrell Ballet, which figures: Goh’s a classic Balanchine ballerina. She’s got the body type and the technique.

Personally I also like that she’s an entrepreneur.

Wish I had more to say about her, aside from the obvious: beautiful dancer, fascinating story, and an immigrant to boot. Love her.

2 thoughts on “Asian and Asian American ballet dancers: Chan Hon Goh

  1. Momo

    Looks like she has had a nosejob to make her features more “Western”, though (her parents, as well as herself in older photos, have flatter, broader noses), which I find unfortunate as so many young Asian ballet dancers are encouraged to look up to her.


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