Dancer to Dancer

Kaylin Maggard Is Your 2017 Cover Model Search Winner!

All of 18-year-old Kaylin Maggard's dreams—from scoring the title of National Senior Outstanding Dancer at New York City Dance Alliance Nationals to winning the 2017 Dance Spirit Cover Model Search—are coming true. And to anyone who knows the gorgeous contemporary dancer, that's no surprise.

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.


What have you been up to since your trip to NYC?

The past few months have been full of fun, but there've also been a lot of good-byes. I wrapped up my final season with my competition studio, Columbia Performing Arts Centre, in May—I'd been dancing there since age 3. I also attended my senior prom and graduated from high school! Once summer began, I started teaching at my studio and jumped back into ballet classes, and hung out with friends and family in my free time. I was humbled to win first place for my senior solo at NYCDA Nationals
with a piece choreographed by one of my mentors, Ida Saki, and I was honored to be named a member of DancerPalooza's Beat Squad. And I just started at Juilliard, which is super-exciting!


(Photo by Erin Baiano)

High School graduation: check (courtesy Maggard)

What was your favorite part of the Cover Model Search experience?

The entire Dance Spirit staff, Michelle, and Haley were all amazing—I loved making those new friends! We bonded quickly and had so much fun together at the photo shoot, we loved seeing CATS, and we really enjoyed taking class together at Broadway Dance Center.

(Photo by Erin Baiano)

What about college makes you most excited—and most nervous?

I'm excited to dance with my peers and upperclassmen, and learn from the world-renowned Juilliard faculty. I'm already very close with a bunch of people in my class (the dance world's pretty small!), and they're all so funny and incredibly talented. I'm most nervous about leaving my family and friends. Growing up in a small college town is very different from navigating NYC.

Posing with the Senior Female Outstanding Dancer finalists at NYCDA (courtesy Maggard)

Are you excited to be an NYC girl?

My first stint in NYC was the summer of 2011, when I attended American Ballet Theatre's summer intensive. I love all of
the action in the city, as well as all the opportunities. I'm excited to meet new people, experience new restaurants, do lots of shopping, and, of course, go to tons of incredible performances. However, I'm afraid of pigeons, and there are a lot in NYC. That makes me nervous.

A NYC outing with her mom (courtesy Maggard)

What was your voting campaign like?

It was a lot of fun! I spread the word through Instagram, Facebook, and Twitter. I'm so thankful for my many friends from summer intensives and tons of regional conventions who took the time to vote.

Do you have any advice for future CMS finalists?

Enjoy every part of the CMS experience and be yourself! Being a finalist is such an honor, and while the voting process was fun, making new friends was the best part. I walked away from this opportunity so thankful to have spent time with the
Dance Spirit staff, Haley, and Michelle!

With Nina Bartell at NYCDA (courtesy Maggard)

A version of this story appeared in the October 2017 issue of Dance Spirit with the title "Walkin On Sunshine."

Dancer to Dancer
We bet Tate McRae would love these. (Photos by Erin Baiano)

What's better than a good dance joke? They're corny, they're punny, and they're exactly what you need to get you through long Nutcracker days. These 10 jokes are guaranteed to put a smile on your face—no matter how much your feet are hurting.

Keep reading... Show less
Dancer to Dancer
Photo by Joe Toreno

Some might say Charlize Glass' fame kicked off with a single three-letter word. In 2014, Beyoncé shared a video of the then–12-year-old dancer performing to "Yoncé" on Instagram, along with a simple caption: "WOW!"

But by that point, the hip-hop mini had already performed at the MTV Video Music Awards and on "The Ellen DeGeneres Show," and won first runner-up with her crew, 8 Flavahz, on "America's Best Dance Crew." And her Queen Bey Insta shout-out wasn't even the pinnacle of her tween career: She earned a spot on The PULSE On Tour as an Elite Protégé for the 2014–2015 season, and performed with Missy Elliott at the Super Bowl XLIX Halftime Show in 2015.

These days, the 16-year-old spends her time touring the country as Brian Friedman's assistant at Radix Dance Convention and blowing up YouTube and Instagram with her class-video cameos. And while the Char Char we fell in love with was a hip-hop cutie pie, the more mature artist we see today is sure to rock the dance world for years to come.

Keep reading... Show less
Dance News
Photo by Erin Baiano

You're obsessed with class videos. We're obsessed with class videos. The passion, energy, and talent showcased in these clips, which give us an insider-y peek at the commercial dance world's hottest classes, are totally irresistible.

But at what point does the phenomenon go from being a good thing to a bad thing for dancers and the dance world? Is the focus on filming distracting from the work dancers are supposed to be doing in class? Are overproduced videos presenting a dangerously misleading picture of the dance world? Is the pressure to be a class video star becoming too much for dancers to handle? These are some of the questions A-list dancer and choreographer Ian Eastwood—no stranger to the class video himself—has been asking on Twitter. And they've sparked a lively, important debate.

Keep reading... Show less
Dancer to Dancer

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!

Keep reading... Show less
Dancer to Dancer
Lex and Taylor in Mia Michaels' "You Matter To Me" (photo by Adam Rose, courtesy Fox)

"So you Think You Can Dance" Season 14 finalists Lex Ishimoto and Taylor Sieve shocked fans at home (at least the ones who hadn't thoroughly scoured their respective Instagrams) during Episode 14, when choreographer Mia Michaels asked if either of them had ever experienced "the kind of love that takes your breath away." They confessed that, yup, they had—with each other. The two met at The Dance Awards in the summer of 2016, where they were each named Senior Best Dancer, and went on to tour with the convention as assistants. Before long—and long before their "SYTYCD" journey—they became a couple.

Take a look at Dance Spirit's exclusive interview where they dish on everything from their favorite dates to the dance moves that give them all the feels.

Keep reading... Show less
Dance News
Melina and Regina Willoughby (photo by Ashley Concannon)

There's a surprising twist to Regina Willoughby's last season with Columbia City Ballet: It's also her 18-year-old daughter Melina's first season with the company. Regina, 40, will retire from the stage in March, just as her daughter starts her own career as a trainee. But for this one season, they're sharing the stage together.

Read more at dancemagzine.com!

Watch This
National Ballet of Canada principal Svetlana Lunkina being amazing (via Instagram)

Yes, we all know dancers are strong. But sometimes it takes a truly epic workout video to remind us JUST HOW INSANELY STRONG they actually are.

Behold, National Ballet of Canada principal Svetlana Lunkina's oh-so-casual pre-class exercise:

Keep reading... Show less
Watch This
via YouTube

Beyoncé's choreographer + Beyoncé's dance captain + the greatest duets of our generation = dance video greatness. Yes, it may seem too good to be true, but the dance gods have gifted us with this very sequence—and it's the best thing we've seen in a long time.

Keep reading... Show less
Dancer to Dancer
Future Star winner Kaitlyn Chapa (photo by Rainbow Dance Media Center, courtesy Jennifer Chapa)

Dance Spirit is beyond excited to announce the first round of 2017 Future Star winners! Every year, DS partners with competitions to recognize dancers with exceptional presence and ability. The second round of winners will be featured in our January issue, so stay tuned!

Keep reading... Show less
Quiz
Original photo by Nathan Sayers

It's time for a tutu test! So many iconic ballets, so many beautiful tutus. Can you figure out which ballet each of these costumes comes from?

Keep reading... Show less

Sponsored

Want to Be on Our Cover?

covermodelsearch-image

Video

Sponsored

mailbox

Get Dance Spirit in your inbox

Sponsored