Introducing Dance Spirit's September Issue!
We probably say this every month, but let us do it one more time: The latest issue of Dance Spirit is the best one yet.
No, really. I mean, take a look at the too-cute cover stars, Allison Holker and Stephen "tWitch" Boss.
Oh yes. They're dating.
Could they possibly be any more in love? And any more talented? And any more perfect for the cover of this issue?
As soon as we found out these wildly attractive "So You Think You Can Dance" alums — she was on Season 2 and he was on Season 4 — were dating, we were on the next flight to L.A., ready to bombard them with a photo shoot.
OK, so that's not exactly how it went. We let them know we were coming. But we were truly thrilled to hear about their rock-solid romance, and we wanted to get the full story on how it happened and, more importantly, who made the first move. (Spoiler alert: she totally did, and he was clueless about it.)
Yes, tWitch and Allison are talented, and yes they're very much in love. But what was best about spending a day on set with the duo was witnessing their incredible amount of support for each other. They're not competitive, they didn't bicker over outfits, jobs or camera angles, and they were constantly feeding off each other, tweaking their moves and doing whatever they could to make the other person look even better.
They were striving for perfection, and it paid off. Check out the cover shot:
We wish Allison and tWitch all the best, both onstage and in their respective spotlights. We can't wait to see what the future holds for them.
In the meantime, there are plenty of ways to check out the pair online:
- Read the cover story by DS contributor and L.A. guru Jen Jones.
- Scour outtakes from tWitch and Allison's photo shoot on Facebook. Warning: The shots are pretty precious.
Finally, let us know what you think! Shoot us an email with your thoughts on the September issue. (Maybe you'll end up in the next issue of DS yourself!)
Harper Watters is a ballet dancer for today's generation. A social media maestro and a charismatic performer, the Houston Ballet soloist is equally at home in front of the camera hosting his hit YouTube series, "The Pre Show"; interacting with fans on his crazy-popular Instagram account; or showing off his beautiful classical technique onstage. It's a multifaceted identity that's proven to be invaluable to his career—and it's taking him to places he never even dreamed of.
Getting corrections from our dance instructors is how we grow, and as students, it's important that we do our best to apply every correction right away. But sometimes—whether it's because we're in physical pain, or have a lot on our minds, or are just not paying attention—those corrections don't sink in. And from a teacher's standpoint, giving the same corrections time and time again gets old very fast. Here are 10 important corrections dance teachers are tired of giving. Take them to heart!
Summer intensive auditions can be nerve-racking. A panel of directors is watching your every move, and you're not even sure if you can be seen among the hundreds of other dancers in the room. We asked five summer intensive directors for their input on how dancers can make a positive impression—and even be remembered next year.
When we think of a dancer who's broken barriers, American Ballet Theatre principal Misty Copeland tends to be the name that comes to mind. And though Copeland has been a crucial advocate for equality in the world of ballet, Raven Wilkinson—a mentor of Copeland's—is considered one of the original pioneers of the movement.
In 1955, Wilkinson became the first African American to dance with the renowned Ballet Russe de Monte Carlo. Her fortitude in the face of bigotry and hate cemented her legacy. Now, with the release of the new children's book Trailblazer: The Story of Ballerina Raven Wilkinson, a new generation of dancers will be inspired by her tale of overcoming obstacles to achieve a dream.
The book details Wilkinson's life, from her experience as a young dancer training in Harlem, to her run-ins with the Ku Klux Klan while on tour with Ballet Russe, to her later ballet career in Europe. "There were times where my heart really hurt because of the situations I had to deal with," she says. "But I always had faith that I was made to be a dancer and that I was gonna dance."
Dance Spirit spoke with Wilkinson to discuss the new book and get her take on racial equality within the ballet world.
Postmodern pioneer Trisha Brown redefined how dance is seen and felt. A founding member of Judson Dance Theater, Brown frequently collaborated with other experimental artists like Yvonne Rainer, Merce Cunningham, Twyla Tharp, and Steve Paxton.
She embraced pedestrian movement, pairing everyday gesture with rhythm and fluidity. "It's liquid," says Wendy Perron, who danced with Brown in the '60s and '70s. "Like a river with many tributaries, water coming out of a faucet, or being on a raft and seeing the water move away in different directions." Brown also pushed beyond stages with choreography in fields, museums—even on the sides of buildings.
There's a common misconception that a dancer's body has to be thin. But the truth is that talent knows no body type, and the number on the scale never determines an artist's capabilities. Here are some extraordinary dancers fighting the stereotype of what a dancer "should" look like.
We always love a good halftime performance. And we LIVE for halftime performances involving talented kids. (Fingers and toes crossed that Justin Timberlake follows Missy Elliott's lead and invites some fabulous littles to share his Super Bowl stage.)
So obviously, our hearts completely melted for 5-year-old Tavaris Jones. Tavaris may have just started kindergarten, but during Monday night's game between the Cleveland Cavaliers and Golden State Warriors, the Detroit native danced with the panache of a veteran pro at halftime.