Dance News

School Buzz: A Peachy Partnership

 A Peachy Partnership

Georgia’s Kennesaw State University and Atlanta Ballet are partnering up—in dance education. Company members from Atlanta Ballet and students at their Centre for Dance Education will be able to pursue a Bachelor of Arts degree in dance at KSU. And participants in the program can receive course credit for professional experience, allowing them to pursue their dance and academic careers simultaneously!

On the flip side, undergraduate KSU dance students will not only get discounts to Atlanta Ballet performances, classes and events, but will also have opportunities to audition for roles that would provide them with professional performance experience. Internships will also be offered at Atlanta Ballet’s Centre for Dance Education.

Celebrating John Lennon

Last spring, the National Dance Institute paid tribute to legendary Beatle, John Lennon. More than 200 young dancers from NDI’s advanced programs, all from NYC public schools, performed at the 32nd annual gala, [ital: Celebrating the Life and Legacy of John Lennon]. Performances at the NOKIA Theatre in Times Square included Lennon’s songs “Imagine,” “Can’t Buy Me Love” and “Here Comes the Sun,” and also featured professional musicians and singers. Lennon’s wife, Yoko Ono, accepted the 2009 Global Health and Hope Award via video message. Terrence Mann, who starred in the original production of [ital: Lennon] on Broadway in 2005, emceed the event.

Harlequin Scholarships Awarded

There’s a good chance that at some point in your dance career, you’ve danced on an American Harlequin dance floor. The company is a world leader in performing arts floors. Every year it awards scholarships to young dancers across the U.S. (so far they’ve honored 156 dancers!). In 2009, a whopping total of $25,000 was divided among these 20 up-and-comers, chosen at random from a pool of nominees:

  • Amanda Nazario (Seaford, NY)
  • Kelby Sankey (Zionsville, IN)
  • Stephanie Wendling (Linthicum, MD)
  • Tessa Netting (Pottstown, PA)
  • Caitlin Hobson (Graham, TX)
  • Jennifer Orosz (Shakopee, MN)
  • Lucero Neri (Dallas, TX)
  • Allison Grier (Pensacola, FL)
  • Brittney Feit (North Babylon, NY)
  • Lauren Vermilion (Fayetteville, AR)
  • Victoria Mosca (Columbus, NJ)
  • Julienna Palladino (Edison, NJ)
  • Tessa Salomone (Sugar Land, TX)
  • Leslie Nzeakor (Mesquite, TX)
  • Sara Coombs (Bristol, CT)
  • Jaimie Albanese (North Babylon, NY)
  • Megan Riddle (Milton, VT)
  • Jennie Vasilik (Fogelsville, PA)
  • Lauren Zaleta (Newtown Square, PA)
  • Samantha Jefferis (Tampa, FL)

For your chance to win, visit!

From Graduation to Giordano

Congratulations to The University of Arizona student, Joshua Blake Carter, who was offered a position with Giordano Jazz Dance Chicago’s second company, Giordano II, upon graduation. In the summers of 2006 and 2008, Carter trained on scholarship with the company. An active choreographer as well, he won Ballet Nouveau Colorado’s national choreography competition, dancemakers2.0, and was commissioned to choreograph a ballet for the company, which will premiere in September.

Carter says that the best decision he’s made as a dancer was going to college. “Dancers should take full advantage of all of the resources available to them in a college or university setting,” he says. He also advises dancers to form key relationships before graduation. “Research companies that interest you,” he says. “If there’s an opportunity to take a workshop or participate in a summer intensive—do it! When you audition for a job, artistic directors are looking for people they know, can trust and are easy to work with.”

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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Dancer to Dancer

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.

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Dancer to Dancer

New York City principal Lauren Lovette has become an icon thanks to her emotional maturity and exceptional musicality. The 26-year-old quickly rose through the ranks after joining the company as an apprentice in 2009, reaching principal status in 2015. A Thousand Oaks, CA, native, Lovette started studying ballet seriously at age 11, at the Cary Ballet Conservatory in Cary, NC. After attending two summer courses at the School of American Ballet, she enrolled as a full-time student in 2006. Last year, she made her choreographic debut with For Clara, her first piece for NYCB. Catch her latest work this month during the company's fall season. —Courtney Bowers

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Dancer to Dancer

In our "Dear Katie" series, former NYCB soloist Kathryn Morgan answers your pressing dance questions. Have something you want to ask Katie? Email for a chance to be featured!

Dear Katie,

I know I'm not getting good enough dance training from any of my local studios. But I'm not sure I'm ready to move away to study at a big-name school, either. How do you know when you're ready to leave home to pursue your passion?


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Your Body

Instagram star Kylie Shea has built a following of nearly 170,000 with her playful workout videos, which combine traditional fitness activities, like jumping rope or running on the treadmill, with pointe shoes and sassy choreography. Shea's effortless cool-girl-next-door vibe and solid ballet technique make her vids totally irresistible.

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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Your Body

Physical discomfort is inevitable when you're spending tons of hours in the studio every day, but some pain shouldn't be suffered through. "Dancing through pain can make an injury worse and lead to more time away from dance," says Dr. Joel Brenner, medical director of dance medicine at Children's Hospital of The King's Daughters in Norfolk, VA. "Failing to rest and recover when you're in serious pain could even lead to the point where you're unable to dance in the future."

That may sound scary, but there's good news: If you take precautions and listen to your body, many injuries can be stopped in their tracks. The first step? Knowing what's normal—and what's not.

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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.

That's part of what makes "Duet," a new video by director Andrew Margetson featuring Royal Ballet beauties Yasmin Naghdi and Beatriz Stix-Brunell, so compelling.

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Watch This
(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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