Luis Salgado

Luis Salgado. Photo by Montana.

Luis Salgado is the kind of dance partner girls dream of: strong, supportive and oh so sexy. Though he’s been dancing since he was a youngster in Puerto Rico, Salgado became a breakout star in the U.S. when he was cast as José—and as the Latin dance assistant choreographer—in the Tony Award–winning musical In the Heights. He’s also made a name for himself in movies: Salgado danced in Step Up 2: The Streets, Enchanted, Across the Universe and Dirty Dancing: Havana Nights. Now, he’s keeping busy with R.Evolución Latina, the nonprofit organization he founded, which uses his “Dare to go beyond” message to empower young performing artists in the Latino community.  —Alison Feller

 

Dear Luis,

DANCE!

Dance barefoot, in the rain, in the street, with or without technique. Let your heart speak through your movement. Follow your heart, even when it seems impossible. Listen to it!

Ask questions—don’t be shy, and don’t be afraid. The sooner you learn to ask, the sooner you’ll explore all the elements that make dance a universal language.

Get thee to ballet class! Further your chances by being versatile.

Don’t strive for perfection; strive for commitment and tenacity. The journey to success is a long one, and only the persistent and

disciplined will get to the final goal.

Train hard and be ready when that opportunity comes, but don’t compete with anyone but yourself.

Always let the artistic process affect you. Every step, every turn, every lyric will influence the making of a new you. Let it hit you hard and use it all for the better.

Love the floor you dance on. It’s your best friend—it will always be there to support you.

Dancing is your FREEDOM and your VOICE. Use it for GOOD!

Luis Salgado

Win It
Photos by Erin Baiano

It's time to get your pirouette on! From September 5th to September 30th, we're hosting a contest to find out who's the best turner of them all.

Put together your most impressive turning combo. Post a video online. Share your turns with us and thousands of other dancers around the world. And if our editors think you're the top turner, you'll win a fabulous prize.

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From the moment the Dance Spirit staff met Kaylin, it was obvious her humility and talent would take her far. Not only did she go full-out during the photo shoot and class at Broadway Dance Center, but she was always cheering on, laughing with, and supporting her fellow CMS contestants Haley Hartsfield and Michelle Quiner. During the voting period, the social media world was abuzz with praise for her work ethic, positive attitude, and generosity.

Since her CMS trip to NYC, Kaylin's moved from her hometown of Columbia, MO, to the Big Apple for her freshman year at Juilliard, and is busy getting acquainted with the city. As for the future? She's taking it one opportunity at a time, but something tells us we'll be seeing this contemporary queen reach new heights every year.

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Now Shea's using her platform to address the body image issues that tend to plague dancers. In a poignant video, she sheds her clothes and tugs at her skin. The caption explains her relationship with her body and the pressure she feels to maintain a certain aesthetic as a dancer.

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(From left) Beatriz Stix-Brunell and Yasmin Nagdhi in a still from "Duet"

Think about it: How often do you see a ballet pas de deux for two women? Almost never, right? Sometimes, choreographers will forgo the traditional danseur-ballerina pas to make a duet for two guys, since they can lift and partner each other easily. But a dance for two ballerinas is a rare thing.

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(From left) Reese Hatala and Phoenix Lil' Mini in "LULAS" (via YouTube)

What happens when Willdabeast Adams gets two of his most amazing lilBEASTS—the pint-sized Reese Hatala and Phoenix Lil' Mini, aka LULAS ("Love U Like A Sister")—to make a video set to a throwback mashup of songs? So, so much cuteness. And so, so much 🔥🔥🔥 .

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"Dancing with the Stars" pro Lindsay Arnold has become a mainstay on the hit show—this fall marks her ninth season! America has fallen in love with her larger-than-life stage presence and vivacious personality. Specializing in Latin ballroom, Arnold trained in Utah with teachers including fellow "DWTS" veterans Shirley and Mark Ballas. After high school, Arnold planned to study physical therapy on a full academic scholarship at Utah Valley University—until landing a spot on "So You Think You Can Dance" Season 9. Catch her on Season 25 of "DWTS" this fall!

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J.Crew's putting a whole new spin on its brand —literally. The popular clothing line's inspired ad campaign has a group of cute male models showing off their best moves in a series of playful dance battles. When we saw one of those models throw down the gauntlet with a rather impressive series of chaîné turns, we knew he had to be a trained dancer, and we were right: He's former New York City Ballet corps member Joshua Thew. Dancer and model Smith Reesie also shows off in a seriously impressive freestyle.

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