Just Keep Spinning...
If you're anything like me, you dread the thirty-two fouetté turns (or worse, the turns from fifth) that ballet teachers just love to throw in after grande allegro. I’m just not a turner...never have been, probably never will be. But last Friday, researchers at Imperial College London made an announcement that made me want to thank my ballet teachers.
According to their study, ballerinas’ brains are wired a little differently (like we didn’t already know that!). But more specifically, they found that three years of ballet training helps the brain suppress the sensation of dizziness.
You know, I may not be a good turner, but now that I think about it, I don’t really get dizzy that often. I can go on a tilt-a-whirl five times in a row without feeling a thing (although, I wouldn’t really recommend that...).
Check out this video from BBC to get a quick rundown on how they conducted the study. It’s pretty cool to hear scientists talk about “the spotting method”—dancers are so smart! Also about a third of the video is devoted to showing a ballerina at the Royal Opera House performing perfect fouetté turns en pointe. Bonus!
Well, this brings class videos to a whole new level! Choreographer Phil Wright and dancer Ashley Liai have been together eight-plus years, but she was still in total shock when he proposed to her mid-dance at Millennium Dance Complex earlier this week. Why? Well, the whole thing was unbelievably perfect.
In the dance industry, dancers don't always have a say in what they wear on their bodies. This can get tricky if you're asked to wear something that compromises your own personal values. So what should you do if you find yourself in this sticky situation? We sat down for a Q&A with "Dancing with the Stars" alumn Ashly Costa to answer that very question. Here's what she had to say about the options dancers have surrounding questionable costumes.
The groundwork for Erin Carpenter's company, Nude Barre, began when she was a teenager. At 16, she earned a spot in the residency program at The Kennedy Center in partnership with Dance Theatre of Harlem. "We were required to wear nude—as in, our actual skin tone—tights and shoes," she remembers. Carpenter brought her "sun tan" tights and a pair of pink ballet shoes with her, because that was all she could find. But she wasn't allowed in class because her dancewear didn't match her skin. "I was so embarrassed," she says. "I looked unprepared. I just didn't have the right nudes." Her teacher explained that the dancers dyed their tights and pancaked their shoes.
There are dancers and then there are DANCERS! Whitney Jensen, soloist at Norwegian National Ballet, is the latter. The former Boston Ballet principal can do it all. From contemporary to the classics this prima has the technical talent most bunheads dream about. Need proof? Look no further.
Luis Fonsi and Daddy Yankee's dance inducing hit, "Despacito," is so catchy it should probably come with a disclaimer that warns people of an uncontrollable itch to tap your feet or bob your head. Some might even feel inclined to go all out and break it down. Niana Guerrero is a prime example of "Despacito's" uncanny ability to unleash the red dressed emoji dancer within. 💃🏽 💃🏽