Damian Woetzel, newly named president of the famed Juilliard arts school in New York, says he's looking forward to "a golden age of creativity" when he takes the reins in 2018.

Woetzel (WEHT'-zehl) is an unconventional choice for the job. He's a former ballet star who's never served in academic administration, and who skipped college to pursue dancing. While he was still a principal dancer at New York City Ballet, he earned a master's degree at Harvard's Kennedy School of Government. He is currently the head of the Aspen Institute Arts Program and the Vail Dance Festival.

Woetzel will work alongside current president Joseph Polisi, who served for more than three decades, for an interim year, then start officially in July 2018.