In our "Dear Katie" series, former NYCB soloist Kathryn Morgan answers your pressing dance questions. Have something you want to ask Katie? Email dearkatie@dancespirit.com for a chance to be featured!

Dear Katie,

For a long time, I was the strongest dancer at my studio. But this year there's a new girl in my class who's very talented, and my teacher's attention has definitely shifted to her. I'm trying not to feel jealous or discouraged, but it seems like my whole dance world has changed. Help!

Serafina

Dear Serafina,

Speaking from a teacher's perspective, take heart! Frequently teachers get sidetracked by the "shiny new toy" in the room, but that shouldn't last forever. It could be that your teacher just feels like she needs to get up to speed on the new dancer. If you keep pushing yourself and focus on what you need to do, your teacher will come back to you. Think about every correction given to the new dancer as if it was directed at you.

I like seeing students self-motivate. It's one of the best ways to prepare for a professional career, because once you're a pro, you're on your own—your teachers aren't there to push you anymore. So use this time to develop that skill. A good teacher will see, and appreciate, your hard work.


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