Happy Jason Samuels Smith Day!
Ten years ago, the city of Shreveport, Louisiana, declared April 23 "Jason Samuels Smith Day." (It's also the 10th anniversary of Dance Spirit's May/June 2004 cover with none other than the hoofer himself.)
To get the celebrations started, here are a few videos of the tap master working his magic.
We'll begin with a clip that you may be familiar with already—it's his jaw-dropping performance on "So You Think You Can Dance" Season 3:
Next, take a look at this clip from a MOVEtheWORLD charity event in 2013:
Back in 2004, Samuels Smith first met classical Indian dance guru Pandit Chitresh Das at American Dance Festival. They've been working together over the last ten years (another 10th anniversary!), and in the last few, have collaborated on a performance series called "India Jazz Suite" which blends their two forms—Kathak and rhythm tap. (A film released in 2011, Upaj:Improvise, documents the tour.) Here's a clip of a recent performance at Lincoln Center this past January:
Tap in Sweden? Yaa, you betcha. Here's a clip from the Stockholm Tap Festival last summer:
In addition to training, competing and winning titles in just about every style you can think of, 13-year-old Kaylee Quinn is a regular on the sci-fi drama "Stitchers," playing the younger version of the show's main character. Her path in dance hasn't been without challenges, though. Last summer, Kaylee won the Hope Award at her regional Youth America Grand Prix, but wasn't sure she'd be able to compete at the NYC finals due to a broken foot. Patience paid off: With her doctor's blessing, Kaylee danced her variations in flat shoes and won the gold medal.
Week 2 of Misty Copeland as guest judge, week 2 of merciless cuts...How can the final episodes of "World of Dance" possibly live up to the sheer dramaaaaaaaaa of last night's episode? Well, based on the nail-biting results dished out by Copeland and Co. last night, the competition is only going to get fiercer from here. Without further ado, last night's results, as told by Kween Misty.
Every ballet dancer knows the time, sweat, and occasional tears the art form demands. But many non-dancers are clueless about just how much work a ballet dancer puts into perfecting his or her dancing. So when the mainstream crowd recognizes our crazy work ethic, we'll accept the round of applause any way it comes—even if it comes via four men in tutus. Yep, we're talking about "The Try Guys Try Ballet" video.
We've said it before and we'll say it again: New York City Ballet principal Sara Mearns is some SERIOUS #goals. Her strength and power onstage borders on superhuman. But what's extra magical about Mearns is that she really puts in the fitness and cross-training work outside of the rehearsal studio. And she's overcome her fair share of injuries. Which is why she was the perfect source for Vogue's latest ballet fitness story.