The opening scene from Matilda the Musical. Photo by Joan Marcus.
I was supposed to see Matilda the Musical when it first came out on Broadway—while it was still in previews, even.
But then I got sick, and it was the kind of sick that makes you unable to even sit in a little seat in an audience. And so I [briefly] lost my opportunity to see the show.
Meanwhile, the rest of the Dance Spirit editors saw the show without me (how rude!), and they all flipped out for it. Now, that's rare: We all have very different tastes and it's not entirely common that we all actually agree on what to obsess over. Yet here they all were, singing "When I Grow Up" and telling me all the reasons I just had to get better so I could see our shared favorite Ryan Steele (another thing we can all agree upon) fly in a swing over the audience.
It took me a while to get fully better, but as soon as I was back up and running, the first thing I did was get myself to Matilda.
Photo by Joan Marcus.
It's as good as—maybe better than?—everyone says. If you've seen it—or even seen glimpses of it at the Macy's Thanksgiving Day Parade or at the Tony Awards—then you understand. If you haven't seen it, please stop not seeing it. Go get tickets. It's so joyful and the kids in it are so incredible.
Speaking of the kids in the show: Matilda made news this week by announcing that the four Matildas we've grown to love and sing along with are leaving the show. We'll miss Sophia, Oona, Bailey and Milly dearly, but are pumped to meet these talented new leading ladies.
Please join us in welcoming the four girls who will share the role of Matilda: Paige Brady (10), Gabriella Pizzolo (10), Ripley Sobo (10) and Ava Ulloa (9). Paige, Gabriella and Ava are all making their Broadway debuts with this show!
Photo by Joan Marcus.
In other Matilda headlines: Remember those catchy tunes I mentioned? They're good enough to have earned a Grammy nomination in the Best Original Score category. Congratulations, soundtrackers! (Don't tell the other nominees, but we hope you take hope the trophy.)
See the show. Learn the songs. Love the kids.
Since the NYC premiere of Alexei Ratmansky's Whipped Cream at American Ballet Theatre's spring gala Monday night, the DS editors haven't stopped talking about its creepy-cute sets and costumes, created by artist Mark Ryden. Well, the obsession is about to get even crazier, because we just heard that Ryden's artwork for the ballet is now on display in not one, but TWO locations in NYC.
Yes, yes, we know: Dancers are athletes as well as artists. But we haven't seen anything hammer home just HOW athletic dancers are quite as well as this video from Self magazine, which features American Ballet Theatre principal/fairy princess Isabella Boylston trying to teach top-level CrossFit enthusiasts ballet.
There's a reason Mia Michaels' nickname is "Mama Mia." The legendary choreographer invests deeply in her dancers, whether they're competitors on "So You Think You Can Dance," members of the Radio City Rockettes, or part of her own elite assistant squad. And now, Michaels is launching a project that aims to give more dancers access to her gifts as a teacher and mentor.
And that's a wrap on "Dancing with the Stars" Season 24, ladies and gents! It's certainly been one for the books. From injuries to shocking eliminations, let's just say Season 24 has had its emotional ups and downs. But despite all that, the season made for some seriously phenom dancing and some killer performances. And as usual, we've loved watching every second of those cha chas, foxtrots, and waltzes.
Let's get right to the exciting stuff, though: Last night's winning couple of "Dancing with the Stars" is...
Nearly 80,000 dance-loving Instagram followers can't be wrong: Quinn Starner is one to watch. And what's just as impressive as the 15-year-old's rabid online following is her ever-growing list of competition accolades. Quinn, who trains at Indiana Ballet Conservatory and Stars Dance Company, been named first runner-up at The Dance Awards for two years in a row (as a junior and a teen); was the 2016 West Coast Dance Explosion Teen National Champion; earned first place in contemporary and third place in the classical division at Youth America Grand Prix Regionals in Pittsburgh last year; has won the Grand Prix Award at ADC|IBC; and was a gold medalist at World Ballet Art Competition Grand Prix. Plus, she made it to the Academy round on last year's "So You Think You Can Dance: The Next Generation," and has performed as Clara in the Radio City Christmas Spectacular. Here's what Quinn has to say about her favorite songs, teachers, and career highlights.
Want a chance to get personally involved in the HOTLY anticipated TV show "World of Dance"? Of course you do. That's why J. Lo. and the rest of the "WOD" team have launched an interactive version of the upcoming NBC series that lets Snapchatters get in on the action.
On Saturday morning, Russell Horning—aka 15-year-old Instagram king @i_got_barzz—was already kind of famous. His admittedly bad but weirdly mesmerizing dance videos had earned him shoutouts from the likes of Rihanna (and dance tributes from the likes of Josh Killacky).
But by Sunday morning? By Sunday morning, Russell Got Barzz had reached an entirely different level of memedom. Because Katy Perry tapped the teen—signature backpack and all—to perform "Swish Swish" with her on "Saturday Night Live." And the internet lost its darn mind.
If, like me, you've ever wondered (and wondered) how that stunning opening scene in La La Land came together, do we have a treat for you.