10 Things We Learned From "All the Right Moves" Episode 1
Last night marked the premiere episode of "All the Right Moves" on Oxygen. Surely you know this by now since we basically haven't shut up about it since May.
The first episode brought exactly what we expected: two contemporary routines, a whole lotta "who's the boss of this company?" drama, and plenty of shirtless Kyle Robinson...which we're totally fine with.
But amidst the breathy performances and the "we swear this is a real audition" scenarios, there were plenty of lessons to be learned. Without further ado...
The 10 Lessons We Learned From "All the Right Moves" Episode 1:
1. Everyone has a role in the group. Travis is undeniably (really guys, stop denying it) the leader of the company. Nick is the funnyman, Kyle is the hot one ("He's husband material," Nick says), and while everyone has dubbed Teddy "The Bohemian," Nick seems to think he's more Rihanna-esque. "Teddy will find love in all the hopeless places," he said. I'd like to see more of Teddy dancing, because I think his moves are some of the best.
2. Reality TV most likely comes with a slight script. I'm sorry, but there's no way I'm buying the fact that Kyle flew out and moved to L.A. to be a part of this company and then "unknowingly" had to audition. I think it's fair that all non-founding members audition, but I say this was all for the televised drama...especially since later Travis basically tells Jaimie that, despite not being able to audition on account of her knee injury, she's already in the company. Fair? Unfair? You decide. I only care about the dancing. And shirtless Kyle.
3. Travis is an amazing choreographer, super-talented dancer and definite star—but his business savvy could use some fine-tuning. During his meeting with his Clear Talent Group agents, it's suggested that they refer to the company as "Travis Wall's Shaping Sound." Travis responds by telling them, "If I say Travis Wall's Shaping Sound, I'm going to hear it from the boys." He's concerned about their friendship, which is great, but I don't hear him denying that this is, in fact, primarily his company. Something tells me this theme is going to be a crucial one in later episodes. I smell a power struggle! Manfight!
4. Travis and Jaimie started dating when Travis was 14. They dated for a full two years, until Travis "realized he was gay." Jaimie's reflection on their relationship? "I can't think of many things that were wrong with that relationship, except for the whole gay thing." Minor detail, Jaim. Though I do think it's incredibly sweet that they have stayed so close over the years, and it's endearing the way Travis is completely protective of her.
5. Almost every Shaping Sound dancer has been in, or on the cover of, Dance Spirit. Melanie Moore? Check. Former Cover Model Search champs Kaitlynn Edgar and Alexa Anderson? Duh. Chantel Aguirre? Got her. Allison Holker? Coming right up. Not to mention the co-founders, plus Kyle, Taja and Jaimie, were on the May/June cover.
6. Taja Riley, gotta love her, has mastered the art of passive-aggressiveness. Travis asked her for feedback, and she found a way to give him total backhanded compliments. "You crack under pressure sometimes," she said." Naturally Travis responded defensively—in his camera aside—by saying "I don't take attacks to my choreography." Was it unprofessional of her to show up at the audition without a headshot? Absolutely. But did I laugh hysterically when she "drew" a headshot, complete with the signature Taja braid? Yup.
7. Some things may be semi-scripted, but I genuinely believe that Jaimie's emotions are real. It is so hard to watch your friends do something you cannot. My heart broke a little for her as she watched the Shaping Sound audition from her stretching corner, unable to participate.
8. Kyle is so hot. Just so, so good-looking.
9. Nick is hilarious. Yes, we knew this already. But my favorite line of the episode was the much-teased "Hey guys, you're hired! We're broke!" from Mr. "I can turn for days" Lazzarini. I was also having giggle-fits when they were working out the Florence + the Machine investor performance choreo and Nick attempted to put monetary value on each move. "Crossing's really going to get us some big money," he said. "Crossing gets us dollars."
10. Chantel Aguirre and Allison Holker are stunning. They are just...beyond. I realize that I was supposed to be focusing on Taja as the "lead girl" during the final performance scene, but man, Chantel is an attention-grabber. Give that girl a spotlight.
This season on "All the Right Moves": "It's not just Travis Wall's Shaping Sound," Nick says. We'll be tuned in—will you?
Much of Janelle Ginestra's career has been about helping others shine. She's dedicated herself to supporting and cheerleading her partner, WilldaBeast Adams; the emerging talents in their dance company, ImmaBEAST; and the countless dancers she inspires at master classes and conventions. Her YouTube channel has become a launching pad for young talents like "Fraternal Twins" Larsen Thompson and Taylor Hatala, thanks to viral videos featuring Ginestra's creative vision.
But Ginestra's a skyrocketing success in her own right—an in-demand choreographer, a social media influencer, and a dance entrepreneur, building a legacy one eight-count at a time. It's time for her turn in the spotlight. And she's more than ready. "I want to be a legend in whatever I do," she says. We'd argue that she already is.
When a choreographer finds a composer whose music truly inspires her, it can feel like a match made in dance heaven. Some choreographers work with the same composers so frequently that they become known for their partnerships. New York City Ballet soloist and resident choreographer Justin Peck, for example, has tapped composer Sufjan Stevens numerous times (last spring, the two premiered The Decalogue at NYCB, to rave reviews); L.A. Dance Project's Benjamin Millepied's working relationship with composer Nico Muhly has spanned a decade and two continents; and when tap dancer Michelle Dorrance premiered the first-ever Works & Process Rotunda Project, a site-specific work for New York City's Guggenheim Museum, last year, percussionist Nicholas Van Young was by her side as an equal partner. Successful collaborations require compatibility between artists, direct and honest communication, and flexible, open minds. But when the stars align, working with a composer can be extremely rewarding.
For ballerinas, it's the dream role to end all dream roles: Odette/Odile in Swan Lake, the type of part dancers spend years preparing for and whole careers perfecting. And it's a role that New York City Ballet principal Tiler Peck never thought she'd dance. Though Peck is one of the world's preeminent ballerinas, her short stature made Odette/Odile, typically performed by longer, leggier dancers, seem (almost literally) out of reach.
Then—surprise!—her name popped up on the cast list for NYCB's fall season run of Swan Lake.
Lani Dickinson's power, grace, and raw presence make her a standout with AXIS Dance Company, whose mission is to change the face of dance and disability by featuring a mix of disabled and non-disabled performers. Born in China, Dickinson was adopted by an American couple and started dancing at 8 in Towson, MD. She attended the Boston Ballet School for two summers, studied at the Idyllwild Arts Academy for the last two years of high school, and graduated with a dance degree from Alonzo King LINES Ballet's BFA program with Dominican University of California. In 2015, she joined AXIS and won a Princess Grace Award. Catch her this month during AXIS Dance Company's 30th-anniversary season—and read on for The Dirt!
Week five of "Dancing with the Stars" proved to be one of the best weeks of the season so far. (And we're not just saying that because Mickey made a cameo debut on the piano during one of the routines—although that certainly didn't hurt!) Everyone brought their A-game, and with such a fun theme the contestants were able to really let their guards down. There was true sincerity in their dancing that we hadn't seen before. But not all Disney stories end with a "happily ever after," and one couple still had to hang up their dancing shoes.
If there's one week you should watch all the routines of it's undoubtedly this one... But, ICYMI, scroll below for our highlights of the night.