Our Favorite Dance Instagrams of January
It's time to celebrate, people. You know why? Because January is fi-na-lly over. Seriously, hasn't this month felt like a 74-day marathon? (Short answer: yes, it has.) But the one silver lining of a super-long month means our Instagram feeds were gifted with some incredible posts these last 31 days. We've rounded up our favorites below!
1. Easton Payne (@eastonblake)
We profiled Easton a few months back in our "You Should Know" section—and you're about to see why. He's working with Project 21 this season, and the combos coming out of his classes are so, so beyond. Below is a particularly perfect example, featuring Mackenzie Auger and Nina Choi dancing to Billy Joel's "It's Still Rock and Roll to Me" (A++ song choice, btw).
2. Lauren Lovette (@laurenlovette)
Lauren Lovette's Instagram is an absolute gem. Every post is accompanied by a caption filled with wisdom, motivational messages, and sincerity. Recently, she and fellow NYCB dancers collaborated with Puma for their "Do You" campaign. Lovette, along with Olivia Boisson, Savannah Lowery, Mimi Staker, Emilie Gerrity, and Unity Phelan, choreographed a small piece in roughly 30 minutes, which they then performed (and posted on Insta for us to admire).
3. Lucy Vallely (@lucy_vallely)
Lucy Vallely epitomizes California cool-girl, and we're so here for it. Her Insta feed is a perfect mix of vintage clothing, improv sessions, collaborations with her many dance friends, and clips from class combos at conventions, like the post below. She and fellow contemporary star Timmy Blankenship assisted Will Loftis during NUVO, and this. combo. is. everything.
4. Jade Chynoweth + Josh Killacky (@jadebug98 and @josh_killacky)
Literally try to name a more iconic duo. Jade Chynoweth, who's Instagram royalty in her own right, danced with fellow commercial world mainstay Josh Killacky, to Killacky's choreo. The song choice? Jaden Smith's "Icon," which could not be more fitting. We've watched this maybe 100 times, and will definitely watch it 100 more.
5. Alex Wong (@alexdwong)
It's safe to say that there is no one better at trolling than Alex Wong. His #AlexWongChallenge videos are works of art (that might even be an understatement). Need proof? Check out his latest dispatch from a mall in Malaysia.
Misty Copeland. Her name is synonymous with exquisite artistry and outspoken advocacy. And her visibility has made a huge impact on the ballet world. Ballet's relationship with race has always been strained at best, hostile at worst. But Copeland's persistent message and star quality have finally forced the ballet industry to start talking about racial diversity, inclusivity, and representation. "The rarity of seeing ourselves represented is sad," Copeland says. "The more we see every hue and body shape represented on the stage, the more possibilities young dancers feel they have for themselves."
Last month, we asked why there wasn't a Best Choreography category at the Oscars—and discovered that many of you agreed with us: Choreographers should definitely be acknowledged for their work on the super-dancy movies we can't get enough of.
Now, we're taking matters into our own (jazz) hands.
We've decided to create a Dance Spirit award for the best cinematic choreography of 2017. With your input, we've narrowed the field to four choreographers whose moves lit up some of the best movies of the year. Check out our nominations for best choreography below—and vote for the choreographer you think deserves the honor. We'll announce the winner on Friday, March 2.
Being a dancer comes with the task of having to entertain the same questions over and over again from those outside the dance world. Of course, we love having our friends and family take an interest in our passion—but if someone asks ONE MORE TIME whether or not we've met Travis Wall, we might just go crazy.
Here are 10 questions that dancers hate getting asked.
Contemporary phenom Christina Ricucci has super-flexible hips, which means she can stretch her legs to unbelievable heights. But when she noticed herself making contorted positions in class, Ricucci realized she was approaching her extensions all wrong. "I went back to the basics in class, squaring my hips and using my turnout," Ricucci says. "I learned to create proper positions, rather than whacked-out versions of them."
Some dancers are so wonky they have a hard time supporting their high legs, while others struggle with limited flexibility. But no matter your facility, you can find a balance of stretch and strength to achieve your fullest range of extension. It's not about how high (or not) your legs can go: It's the quality of the movement, and how you get those legs up, that counts.
Once upon a time (until the 2014 Winter Olympics in Sochi concluded, to be exact), figure skaters had to compete to music without words. Before this rule change, a skater faced an automatic point deduction if the music even hinted at vocals. Understandably, there were *a lot* of Olympic programs skated to classical music, and you'd tend to hear the same music selections over and over and over.
There are plenty of current Olympic figure skaters who'd make beautiful dancers (first among them Adam Rippon, whose gorgeously choreographed long program won the internet, if not the gold). But today, as we wait for the women's figure skating competition to crown its new champions, we wanted to throw it back to one of the most beautifully balletic skaters of all time: Sasha Cohen.
The high-flying leaps of grand allegro are meant to be incredibly exciting. But at the end of an intense ballet class, when you're exhausted, it can be hard to give them the attention they deserve. Want to pump up your big jumps? Follow these 10 vital tips from Jennifer Hart, curriculum director and instructor at Ballet Austin.
"Whole, low-fat, or skim?" The question of which milk to drink has gotten a little more complicated lately, with a wide variety of nondairy milks popping up in grocery stores. To find out which ones are worth your milk money, we had registered dietitian Monika Saigal answer some FAQs.