Our Holiday Wish List
The holidays are in full swing, and if you're not quite done with your shopping list, don't worry—we've got you've covered! We scoured the web for presents both you and your dance friends will love. And if you're still stumped, check out our guide to the gifts on every dancer's wishlist. (It features more than 50 fab items!)
Oh, these Just For Kix boots are supposed to be worn in the studio? Whatever, I'm wearing them out, too! The style is punky, the sequins make 'em flashy and they're comfy enough for hip hop dancing followed by a day of shopping—they are my dream shoes. Plus, we're giving away a pair! —Alison Feller, editor in chief
This ballet slipper stocking from Discount Dance Supply may just be the cutest thing I've ever seen. Fill it with dance-themed goodies—and candy!—and it's the perfect gift for any dancer. —Rachel Zar, managing editor
Every time our fashion editor Michael unpacks a box of beautiful new leotards for a Dance Spirit photo shoot, I whine about how leos are so much cooler now than they were when I was dancing. Case in point: This beauty by Bloch, with its cute little braid detail and sheer cap sleeves. My 16-year-old self is drooling. —Margaret Fuhrer, associate editor
There's nothing better than a great pair of booty shorts, and I'm obsessed with these shorts from Capezio. Between the perfectly stretchy material and thick, low-rise waistband, they're the comfiest booty shorts I own—great for the studio and the gym! —Michael Anne Bailey, assistant/fashion editor
Which gift are you dying to have? Tell us in the comments below!
Much of Janelle Ginestra's career has been about helping others shine. She's dedicated herself to supporting and cheerleading her partner, WilldaBeast Adams; the emerging talents in their dance company, ImmaBEAST; and the countless dancers she inspires at master classes and conventions. Her YouTube channel has become a launching pad for young talents like "Fraternal Twins" Larsen Thompson and Taylor Hatala, thanks to viral videos featuring Ginestra's creative vision.
But Ginestra's a skyrocketing success in her own right—an in-demand choreographer, a social media influencer, and a dance entrepreneur, building a legacy one eight-count at a time. It's time for her turn in the spotlight. And she's more than ready. "I want to be a legend in whatever I do," she says. We'd argue that she already is.
Almost a month out, Puerto Rico continues to suffer the devastating aftereffects of Hurricane Maria. Many of the island's residents still lack power, clean water, and safe housing. Ballet classes? For Puerto Rican dance students, they must feel like an impossible luxury.
But a dance studio in Florida is working to allow a group of young Puerto Ricans to continue their training. And it needs your help.
Yes, I am a dancer, and yes, I am fat.
There's nothing quite as soul-crushing as the reactions I've received when I've told people I dance. They can range from disbelief to confusion to shock. To many people, it's somehow incomprehensible that a plus-size person like myself could grace a stage. While the body-positive movement has been trucking along at full force over the past few years, it hasn't made much progress in the dance community yet. In fact, the words "body positivity" and "dance" are almost never used together in the same sentence.
Despite that fact, dance is what helped me learn to love my larger frame. In honor of National Body Confidence Day, I wanted to talk about my first time in a studio, and about the tremendous progress I've made since.
If you've ever seen a Janelle Ginestra class video, you know how lit her combos are. What you don't see in those clips is how devoted Ginestra is to her students. We went behind the scenes at one of her sold-out IMMA SPACE classes to see Ginestra in her element, mentoring some of L.A.'s most talented dancers. It was an inspiration feedback loop.
All photos by Joe Toreno.
In our "Dear Katie" series, former NYCB soloist Kathryn Morgan answers your pressing dance questions. Have something you want to ask Katie? Email firstname.lastname@example.org for a chance to be featured!
I love ballet, and I've been told that I have a lot of potential. I can see myself dancing professionally one day. But I'm also working toward my black belt in karate—and I'm passionate about that, too. How can I keep up my technique while also making time for the other things I love? Is that even possible?
What do you get when you combine a Beyoncé anthem, fierce girls from all over the world, and choreography by legends like Ellenore Scott and Lamar Lee? You get the epic music video below. The viral video features little girls who live everywhere from Tanzania to Washington D.C. dancing and lip-syncing to Queen Bey's song "Freedom," and the result is electrifying. These littles can dance—and they bring a determination and enthusiasm to their movement that's truly inspiring.