Dance News

Earth Day, Dancer-Style

Happy Earth Day, you green goddesses! Spring has (finally) sprung, and there's no better time to put a little nature-focused TLC into your life. We've rounded up our most environmentally friendly tips and tricks, and interspersed them with gorgeous outdoor photo shoot #inspo. Here's to another year of doing our part to help the planet!

Alice Williamson (photo by Diana Patient Photography)

Hate throwing away your dead pointe shoes? Read all about a Texas teen who had the same problem—and then started a pointe shoe recycling program!

Alice Williamson (photo by Diana Patient Photography)

H&M might be bringing dance royalty out to celebrate World Recycle Week, but you can actually recycle old textiles all year long. Or, if you have dance duds that are still good, arrange a clothing swap with your friends!

Courtney Lavine (photo by Karolina Kuras)

We all know it's essential to stay properly fueled and hydrated through a long day of class and rehearsal. Rep your eco-style with a reusable water bottle, snack bags and utensils.

Hanna Bass (Photo by ballerina project)

Green your (beauty) routine by looking for hair, skin and makeup products that don't test on animals.

Sarah Hay (photo by ballerina project)

Organize a carpool to and from class. It's the perfect opportunity to review notes from last night's rehearsal.

Zarina Stahnke (photo by ballerina project)

Check out your local farmer's market for seasonal produce that's bursting with nutrition and flavor.

Helen Cave (photo by ballerina project)

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Dance News
(From left) ABT's Erica Lall; NYCB's India Bradley; Washington Ballet's Nardia Boodoo; NYCB's Rachel Hutsell (all photos by Rachel Neville)

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."

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Screenshot via NowThis on Facebook

The Olympics are always full of inspiring Cinderella stories, where athletes no one had heard of mere months ago end up blowing all expectations out of the water, and maybe even nabbing a medal in the bargain. But we've recently caught wind of a different kind of Cinderella story—and it's one we really, really hope shows up in the Closing Ceremonies of the PyeongChang Olympics, airing tonight on NBC starting at 8 pm Eastern/5 pm Pacific time.

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Dancer to Dancer

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.

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Dancer to Dancer
ABT JKO School student Miuka Kadoi shoiwng off her beautiful line (photo by Kenneth Edwards)

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.

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Dance News
Our nominees (clockwise from top left): Roberto Campanella, Aurélie Dupont, Ashley Wallen, and Anthony Van Laast

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.

Leap! National Dance Competition offers dancers of all skill levels an opportunity to showcase their talents in an event where the focus is on fun and competing is just a bonus!

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Dance News
Bronze medalist Kaetlyn Osmond skating her "Black Swan" long program (screenshot via YouTube)

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.

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Dance Videos
Look at that extension! (Rick Moffitt/Wikipedia Commons)

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.

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How To
Thinkstock

Thinking about declaring a dance major? We had professors discuss all the factors you should consider before submitting that major-declaration form.

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How To
Giphy

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.

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