September 2017 Table of Contents


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"I'm Still Kalani"
Kalani Hilliker on staying focused and keeping her cool throughout a rocky "Dance Moms" ride.

What I'd Wish I'd Known
2017 dance grads reflect on the advice that would have helped them ease into their freshman year.

What Do College Dance Programs Really Look For?
Application advice straight from the people who make the decision.

Transatlantic Training
Going global for college can expand your artistic horizons. Here's how to make it happen.

Dance Spirit's 2017 Higher Ed Guide
A state-by-state breakdown of 155 colleges and universities with dance programs.

Reach New Heights
Tips to help your jumps soar.

Living That #BalletLife
A (very busy) day with ABT Studio Company dancer Léa Fleytoux.

Happy Birthday, Dance Spirit!
Take a trip down memory lane for our 20th anniversary.

Quiz
How well do you know Dance Spirit?

Up Front: Buzz
The scoop on Travis Wall's new piece for Cincinnati Ballet.

Up Front: The Dirt
"Dancing with the Stars" pro Lindsay Arnold.

Letter to My Teenage Self
Contemporary star Melanie Moore.

Dear Katie
Kathryn Morgan answers your pressing dance questions.

Choreographer's Collage
Where Amy Seiwert finds inspiration.

Diary
Hayden Hopkins on what it's like to dance for Cirque du Soleil.

Body Buzz
The most nutritious energy bars to reach for between classes.

Fitness
Three yoga poses to aid your dancer body.

Health
Acupuncture 101.

Mind
How to train your brain to take more risks.

Fashion
Classwear gets sleek in neutral shades.

Style Lab
Get her look: Miami City Ballet's Ella Titus shows us her key pieces.

Beauty
The prettiest stage-makeup colors for every complexion.

Ballroom Spotlight
Letting your partner take the lead.

College Corner
All the details on The Boston Conservatory's merger with Berklee College of Music.

You Should Know
Commercial queen Kennadi Boese.

Dancer to Dancer

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.

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Win It
Courtesy CAA

You read that right, people—Dance Spirit's giving away two tickets to the "SYTYCD" tour in the city of your choice, complete with an exclusive meet & greet with select cast members! Read on for the complete prize listing and official rules.

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Week five of "Dancing with the Stars" proved to be one of the best weeks of the season so far. (And we're not just saying that because Mickey made a cameo debut on the piano during one of the routines—although that certainly didn't hurt!) Everyone brought their A-game, and with such a fun theme the contestants were able to really let their guards down. There was true sincerity in their dancing that we hadn't seen before. But not all Disney stories end with a "happily ever after," and one couple still had to hang up their dancing shoes.

If there's one week you should watch all the routines of it's undoubtedly this one... But, ICYMI, scroll below for our highlights of the night.

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Via Facebook

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.

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Gianluca Russo (via Instagram)

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.

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Okay, so it's also Friday the 13th. (Eek! Be sure not to let any black cats cross your path on the way to the studio!)

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Dancer to Dancer

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.

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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 dearkatie@dancespirit.com for a chance to be featured!

Dear Katie,

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?

Megan

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