(b Florence, S Carolina, 11 Apr. 1979)
American dancer. She took ballet classes in Belgium, aged 3, and continued her studies at the Columbia City Ballet and North Carolina School of the Arts, under Melissa Hayden. Precociously gifted, she danced many adult roles while still a student and joined American Ballet Theatre in 1996, where she was promoted to soloist in 1999 and principal in 2002. Murphy's classical technique has been showcased in ABT's 19th-century repertory but her musical and stylistic intelligence make her versatile across a wide range, including works by Tudor, Balanchine, Graham, MacMillan, Tharp, Taylor, and Morris. She has created roles in several ballets including Elo's Glow—Stop and Tharp's Rabbit and Rogue. Murphy has guested widely including with the Mariinsky and Stiefel & Stars. She has also danced for television and was featured in the films Center Stage and Center Stage 2.