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Subject: William Marrié, 33, a Lead Dancer in 'Movin' Out'

New York
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Date Posted: November 18, 2002 4:14:01 EDT

William Marrié, a classical dancer of exceptional dramatic power from the National Ballet of Canada who was appearing as a lead in "Movin' Out," the Twyla Tharp-Billy Joel Broadway show, died on Saturday morning at New York Presbyterian Hospital from injuries sustained in a traffic accident.

Mr. Marrié, who would have been 34 today, was on his motorcycle Friday evening when he and a taxi collided at 46th Street and Park Avenue, the police said. It was unclear which direction each vehicle was traveling, and the police report did not indicate whether Mr. Marrié was wearing a helmet.

Mr. Marrié starred as Eddie, the Long Island mechanic and Vietnam veteran, at the Wednesday and Saturday matinees of "Movin' Out." He had moved from Toronto to New Jersey while performing in the show, at the Richard Rodgers Theater. After his accident, the role was performed by Lawrence Rabson, another Canadian in the cast, on Saturday afternoon.

Ms. Tharp's strenuous choreography for the show, which has no dialogue, requires what she calls two equally good casts on days when there are two performances.

In no way, however, could Mr. Marrié be regarded as an understudy. Anyone who saw his emotionally nuanced performance as Eddie and his stunning appearances in Toronto or with American Ballet Theater in New York would have been dazzled by both his dramatic depth and his bravura technique.

As a guest with Ballet Theater two years ago, he made his Petruchio in John Cranko's "Taming of the Shrew" a complex character that the ballet does not usually reveal. Dancing opposite Irina Dvorovenko as Katherina, he played with stretched-out phrases of movement that changed tempo and direction with the quickness of asides to the audience. It was an example of great and rare dance acting.

Ms. Tharp singled out this quality yesterday. "The intensity that was part of his charisma came from an actor's route," she said. "He looked emotionally at a scene and the dancing came from that.

"He was a wonderful dancer and a huge heart. He was passionate as a human being, very smart, and there was nothing phony about him. He was just getting the exposure he deserved."

Born in Montreal, Mr. Marrié studied at the École Superieur de Danse du Quebec and the Banff School of Performing Arts. He joined the National Ballet of Canada in 1990 and became a soloist in 1995. Although he appeared in classical roles, he was featured prominently in the ballets of James Kudelka, the company's artistic director, who named him a principal in 2001.

At the premiere of Mr. Kudelka's dark version of "Swan Lake" in Toronto in 1999, Mr. Marrié's resilience and energy created a demonically danced Rothbart.

His especially tormented everyman in Mr. Kudelka's "Four Seasons" was further testimony to the depth of his performances.

He is survived by his mother, Andrée LeBlanc; his father, Claude Marrié; two sisters, Maude and Edith Marrié; a brother, Blaise; and his stepfather, Gilles Bleiveise.

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