Dance News

"DWTS" Season 14 Cast Revealed!

For all of you "Dancing With the Stars" fans that have been dying to know who will be tearing up the dance floor this season, here's the rundown:

The star: Jack Wagner

Why you know him: He's starred in "Melrose Place" and "General Hospital," but he's best known as Heather Locklear's ex-fiance.

His partner: Anna Trebunskaya

 

 

The star: Melissa Gilbert

Why you know her: She played Laura Ingalls on the television show "Little House on the Prairie."

Her partner: Maksim Chmerkovskiy

 

The star: Donald Driver

Why you know him: He's a wide receiver for the Green Bay Packers and Super Bowl champion.

His partner: Peta Murgatroyd

 

 

The star: William Levy

Why you know him: Apparently he's the "Brad Pitt of Mexico" and has appeared in several J.Lo videos.

His partner: Cheryl Burke

 

The star: Sherri Shepherd

Why you know her: She's a co-host on the "The View."

Her partner: Val Chmerkovskiy

 

The star: Katherine Jenkins

Why you know her: She's an opera star who's actually been a guest performer on the show in previous seasons.

Her partner: Mark Ballas

 

The star: Gavin Degraw

Why you know him: Pop singer and the voice behind the song every lyrical dancer has performed to: "Belief."

His partner: Karina Smirnoff

 

The star: Martina Navratilova

Why you know her: She's a tennis legend. (She has 18 grand slam titles!)

Her partner: Tony Dovolani

 

The star: Roshon Fegan

Why you know him: He's one of the stars of the Disney Channel's "Shake It Up."

His partner: Chelsie Hightower

The star: Maria Menounos

Why know her: She's one of hosts on "Extra." (I remember her from her days on "Channel One"! Do you?)

Her partner: Derek Hough

 

The star: Jaleel White

Why you know him: Look! It's Steve Urkel!

His partner: Kym Johnson

 

 

The star: Gladys Knight

Why you know her: We're pretty sure there's no explanation needed, but just in case, she's a Motown star and 8-time Grammy winner.

Her partner: Tristan MacManus

 

Who will you be rooting for this season? If we had to guess, we'd put Maria Menounos and Derek Hough at the top of the leader board right out of the gate!

Dancer to Dancer

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.

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Win It
Courtesy CAA

You read that right, people—Dance Spirit's giving away two tickets to the "SYTYCD" tour in the city of your choice, complete with an exclusive meet & greet with select cast members! Read on for the complete prize listing and official rules.

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Tiler Peck and Chase Finlay in Swan Lake (photo by Paul Kolnik)

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.

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Low on dancewear inspiration? Return to the classics in bold black and elegant white.

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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!

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Dance News

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.

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Dance News
Via Facebook

Almost a month out, Puerto Rico continues to suffer the devastating aftereffects of Hurricane Maria. Many of the island's residents still lack power, clean water, and safe housing. Ballet classes? For Puerto Rican dance students, they must feel like an impossible luxury.

But a dance studio in Florida is working to allow a group of young Puerto Ricans to continue their training. And it needs your help.

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Dancer to Dancer
Gianluca Russo (via Instagram)

Yes, I am a dancer, and yes, I am fat.

There's nothing quite as soul-crushing as the reactions I've received when I've told people I dance. They can range from disbelief to confusion to shock. To many people, it's somehow incomprehensible that a plus-size person like myself could grace a stage. While the body-positive movement has been trucking along at full force over the past few years, it hasn't made much progress in the dance community yet. In fact, the words "body positivity" and "dance" are almost never used together in the same sentence.

Despite that fact, dance is what helped me learn to love my larger frame. In honor of National Body Confidence Day, I wanted to talk about my first time in a studio, and about the tremendous progress I've made since.

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