Dance Spirit: What was it like to perform in front of so many celebrities?
Bruce Weber: We actually knew beforehand who was going to be sitting where, because there were pictures of all the actors and actresses on the chairs. During the show we weren’t thinking about them because everything goes so fast, but afterwards we looked out and there were all of these talented and famous people standing and clapping for us. It was completely overwhelming and amazing.
DS: Wow! Did you get to meet any of them?
BW: Billy Crystal gave us a hello and a wave, and at one point I was really close to Gwyneth Paltrow! It was hard to talk to them because of the tight security, but everyone backstage was really nice.
DS: You usually perform Iris at the Kodak Theatre, where the Academy Awards are held. How was this different from any other show?
BW: The Kodak Theatre is our home, and usually we have dressing rooms. For the Oscars we were kicked out of them. The only place we had was the dance studio.
DS: In the show, are there separate dancers and acrobats, or does each person do a little bit of both?
BW: For both Iris and the Oscar performance, there is a group for each specialty--dancers and acrobats. Occasionally, there is a crossover if a performer is able to do both. For instance, two of the dancers in the Oscar performance are "hand to hand" acrobats in Iris. As the dance captain I primarily deal with the dancers, but I'm responsible for some of the choreography in the acrobatics sections, too.
BW: Being a dance captain means that I manage all of the dancers, try to keep the integrity of the choreographers' movement, work closely with the creators and keep everyone in check!
DS: As a dancer, what was your favorite part of the Oscar routine?
BW: I love the long finale--it’s high-energy and full of acrobatic tricks. Plus, I love fast, crazy choreography! But the most memorable part was sitting in the chairs onstage and looking out at the audience.
DS: Do you have any advice for readers that are interested in joining Cirque du Soleil?
BW: Make yourself known. There are so many dancers that want to be a part of this company, so you need to keep in touch with casting, update your file periodically and persistently let the Cirque agents know that you're available and interested. Also, you need to be as well-rounded as possible. Take as many different classes as you can. The more styles you're proficient in, the more valuable you are.
Click here to watch the cast of Iris perform at the Academy Awards.
There's a reason Mia Michaels' nickname is "Mama Mia." The legendary choreographer invests deeply in her dancers, whether they're competitors on "So You Think You Can Dance," members of the Radio City Rockettes, or part of her own elite assistant squad. And now, Michaels is launching a project that aims to give more dancers access to her gifts as a teacher and mentor.
And that's a wrap on "Dancing with the Stars" Season 24, ladies and gents! It's certainly been one for the books. From injuries to shocking eliminations, let's just say Season 24 has had its emotional ups and downs. But despite all that, the season made for some seriously phenom dancing and some killer performances. And as usual, we've loved watching every second of those cha chas, foxtrots, and waltzes.
Let's get right to the exciting stuff, though: Last night's winning couple of "Dancing with the Stars" is...
Nearly 80,000 dance-loving Instagram followers can't be wrong: Quinn Starner is one to watch. And what's just as impressive as the 15-year-old's rabid online following is her ever-growing list of competition accolades. Quinn, who trains at Indiana Ballet Conservatory and Stars Dance Company, been named first runner-up at The Dance Awards for two years in a row (as a junior and a teen); was the 2016 West Coast Dance Explosion Teen National Champion; earned first place in contemporary and third place in the classical division at Youth America Grand Prix Regionals in Pittsburgh last year; has won the Grand Prix Award at ADC|IBC; and was a gold medalist at World Ballet Art Competition Grand Prix. Plus, she made it to the Academy round on last year's "So You Think You Can Dance: The Next Generation," and has performed as Clara in the Radio City Christmas Spectacular. Here's what Quinn has to say about her favorite songs, teachers, and career highlights.
Want a chance to get personally involved in the HOTLY anticipated TV show "World of Dance"? Of course you do. That's why J. Lo. and the rest of the "WOD" team have launched an interactive version of the upcoming NBC series that lets Snapchatters get in on the action.
On Saturday morning, Russell Horning—aka 15-year-old Instagram king @i_got_barzz—was already kind of famous. His admittedly bad but weirdly mesmerizing dance videos had earned him shoutouts from the likes of Rihanna (and dance tributes from the likes of Josh Killacky).
But by Sunday morning? By Sunday morning, Russell Got Barzz had reached an entirely different level of memedom. Because Katy Perry tapped the teen—signature backpack and all—to perform "Swish Swish" with her on "Saturday Night Live." And the internet lost its darn mind.
If, like me, you've ever wondered (and wondered) how that stunning opening scene in La La Land came together, do we have a treat for you.