Sad News from Alvin Ailey American Dance Theater
Can everyone please just stop retiring? This spring alone, we've seen the company departures of Pacific Northwest Ballet's Carla Körbes and American Ballet Theatre's Paloma Herrera and Xiomara Reyes. On Saturday night, Julie Kent will also take her final bow with ABT.
And now comes the news that not one, not two, but three Alvin Ailey American Dance Theater stars will leave the company after this season? I can't. #Allofthefeels.
Back in April, it was announced that husbands Kirven and Antonio Douthit-Boyd would be heading to St. Louis, MO, to direct the Center of Creative Arts, where Antonio trained growing up. They'll take their last bows with AAADT this July in Paris.
These two, amirite? (From left: Antonio and Kirven Douthit-Boyd; photo by Andrew Eccles, courtesy AAADT)
And we just heard that on Sunday night, the goddess that is Alicia Graf Mack will say farewell to AAADT, too, dancing in Alvin Ailey's Revelations at NYC's Lincoln Center.
We'll miss those legs. And feet. And everything. (Photo by Richard Calmes, courtesy AAADT)
I know what you're thinking: How can Graf Mack be retiring right now?? Especially since she just returned from a leave of absence, which she took to recover from an injury and give birth to her adorable son. But there's a silver lining here: Like the Douthit-Boyds, Graf Mack isn't truly leaving the dance world behind. In addition to leading one-day intensives with her sister Diasha and the D(n)A Arts Collective, she's joining the faculties of both Webster University and Washington University in St. Louis.
We'll miss you Antonio, Kirven and Alicia!
Please don't ever leave us (again), Jamar! (From left: Antonio Douthit-Boyd, Alicia Graf Mack, Jamar Roberts, and Kirven Douthit-Boyd; photo by Andrew Eccles, courtesy AAADT)
Harper Watters is a ballet dancer for today's generation. A social media maestro and a charismatic performer, the Houston Ballet soloist is equally at home in front of the camera hosting his hit YouTube series, "The Pre Show"; interacting with fans on his crazy-popular Instagram account; or showing off his beautiful classical technique onstage. It's a multifaceted identity that's proven to be invaluable to his career—and it's taking him to places he never even dreamed of.
The dancers who take our breath away are the risk-takers, the ones who appear completely fearless onstage. "When you see somebody trying to travel more, go farther, push the limits of their physical abilities, that's always going to be inspiring," says Ballet BC dancer Alexis Fletcher.
But dance training can feel like it's in conflict with that idea. We spend thousands of hours in the studio trying to do steps perfectly, and that pursuit of perfection can make us anxious about taking risks. What if we fail? What if we fall?
Luckily, fearlessness is a mental skill that you can work on, just as you work on your technique. Here's how you can learn to push yourself past your limits.
The 2018 Oscar noms are here. Which is fun and all; we'll never not get excited about a night of glitz and glamor and, when we're lucky, pretty great dancing. But we'd be a heck of a lot more excited if the Academy Awards included a Best Choreography category. And really—why don't they?
Maud Arnold is one of the busiest tap dancers on the planet. As a member of the Syncopated Ladies, Maud—along with her big sis and fellow tapper Chloé Arnold—is on constantly the road for performances, workshops, and master classes. For the average person, that kind of schedule could lead to a serious derailment of healthy habits. But Maud's far from average. Here's how the fit, fierce, flawless tap star stays stage-ready—no matter what time zone she finds herself in.
If you're in need of a piece that's both trendy and sophisticated, look no further than this Só Dança crop top. Featuring elegant long sleeves, a high neckline, and a delicate lace trim, it's both classic and contemporary—perfect for everything from that big audition to a long night in the studio. Enter below for your chance to win it!
Auditioning for summer intensives in person may be the ideal—but for Anna McDowell, a 16-year-old student at Juneau Dance Theatre in Juneau, AK, it's rarely possible. “Living in Alaska, it's difficult to travel to auditions," she says. “It gets way too expensive!" Instead, each year, with help from her teachers and a videographer, she puts together a well-crafted video and submits it to schools around the country. Last year, her high-quality video helped her earn acceptance to nearly every program she applied for. Most summer intensive programs, eager to attract students from far and wide, will accept video auditions from those who can't travel to take class. But major schools look at hundreds of submissions each year, which means video auditioners have just a few minutes—or even seconds—to make a great impression. If you're about to create an audition video, follow these tips from the professionals to put your best digital foot forward.