Walter Venditti: the 84-year-old ballet teacher who keeps Milan on its toes

Walter Venditii is the sort of city which empties as soon as holidays arrive, and in Italy there are lots of holidays. The schools are shut and so are private dancing schools… except for that of Walter Venditti.

Everyone knows that Venditti will have a lesson, even when there’s hardly a local around. He’s 84, and teaches around sixteen lessons a week, demonstrating steps and creating fiendishly difficult and fast Cecchettian combinations.

Venditti joined the ballet company at in Milan just after the war, and stayed until 1976. During that time he worked alongside Massine and his idol, Balanchine, as well as dancing in productions with Nureyev, Fracci, Fonteyn, and Beriosova. His passion for Spanish dance led to a collaboration with Antonio Gades, and his love for tip-tap brought him to the Italian television screen in musical numbers as well as classical.

After an injury when he was 40, he was forced to leave his dancing career, and soon after formed his school, which is attended by everyone from the lawyer during her lunch break to .

Thank you, Walter Venditti, for your constancy, enthusiasm and love of dance and dancers.

See over 40 photos of M° Venditti at work on Flickr.


  1. Jerome says

    I studied with Mr Venditti a couple of years ago when I was on Lake Como for a holiday. Inspirational. This man has so much energy!

  2. Giovanna Leva says

    Ho studiato negli anni ’80 con lui e devo dire era sempre di buon umore e pieno di entusiasmo…se ancora oggi danzo lo devo a lui….un grande grazie! Nessun altro maestro mi hai mai comunicato tanto amore per la danza.

  3. Annalisa Bernini says

    Ho avuto la fortuna di studiare con il Maestro Venditti negli anni 80 fino alla metà degli anni 90. Le esperienze più belle che ho avuto con la danza le devo a questo grande Maestro del quale ancora oggi, a distanza di tanti anni conservo un ricordo dolcissimo ed un affetto grandissimo.
    Grazie Maestro!

  4. says

    I have been studying at Venditti’s school for more than ten years and I have to say thanks for your article and pictures. They perfectly portray what it means to study with him and to be part of his school. It’s amazing!

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