So Much Dance in NYC

Fall in NYC is the best. The leaves start to change, the air is crisp, I get to start wearing tights and boots again—and dance companies are in full swing with their fall seasons. It's my favorite time of year. Here are a few fabulous shows I've taken in recently:


Rock of Ages

See my earlier blog on this rockin' show, now starring Kerry Butler as Sherrie. Start to finish, this show is a great time. It's jam-packed with singalong classics, great dancing and tons of laughter. 


Billy Elliot

I finally saw the Tony Award-winning sensation of the year! I have to be honest, I didn't know if it would live up to all this hype. But it did. The music was lively, the storyline was touching and Tommy Batchelor (who played the lead role of Billy that night) was adorable. This is a very family-friendly musical that kids and parents alike will enjoy. I especially liked "Electricity" and the rousing finale number. For more on Tommy and another new Billy, stay tuned for the December 2009 issue of DS!



This group is insane! I attended this hip-hop show at The Joyce (congrats to the group, by the way—eight shows, eight standing ovations!) and was blown away! It's so easy to see great breakdancing and freestyling these days on shows like "America's Best Dance Crew." But Groovaloo, a crew of super-talented dancers from L.A., really know how to tear it up. And they manage to tell a story throughout the dancing that's surprisingly emotional. You haven't seen headspins until you've seen them done by the flip-tastic members of Groovaloo. Fun fact: Several members of Groovaloo went on to form the Beat Freaks—more on both fab crews in the January 2010 issue of DS!


In the Heights

Yeah yeah, I've blogged about this before. I've seen it more than once. This is my all-time favorite show on Broadway and I would see it every single day if I could. Although I was sad that my favorite dancer, Luis Salgado, was absent from this night's performance, it was still as incredible as ever. And familiar face Will Wingfield has joined the cast as Graffiti Pete. He's all bulked up since his days on "So You Think You Can Dance" and looks stunning. Plus, who knew this superstar could sing?! His movement is sharp and precise and it's hard to take your eyes off him throughout the show.


The "So You Think You Can Dance" Tour

DS Style editor Lauren Levinson and I made the trek (OK, it was an 18 minute train ride, not exactly a trek) to Newark, NJ, for the "SYTYCD" tour last week. We were lucky enough to be able to hang out with a few of our favorite dancers before the show, so keep your eyes peeled on for video interviews in the next few weeks. Jeanine, Ade, Melissa, Jason and Phillip were so fun to hang out with. We brought the October issue of Dance Spirit, which they immediately tore through. A shout out to Cover Model Search Ida Saki: They were thrilled you won! Ade even said he remembered you from a NYCDA event! We also showed Jeanine a sneak preview of her November cover and she went crazy over it. We hope you will, too!


Now happening in NYC: Fall for Dance! It's just $10 a show, so hurry up and try to get what's left of the in-demand tickets!

Tavaris Jones dancing with the Cleveland Cavaliers' Scream Team hip-hop crew

We always love a good halftime performance. And we LIVE for halftime performances involving talented kids. (Fingers and toes crossed that Justin Timberlake follows Missy Elliott's lead and invites some fabulous littles to share his Super Bowl stage.)

So obviously, our hearts completely melted for 5-year-old Tavaris Jones. Tavaris may have just started kindergarten, but during Monday night's game between the Cleveland Cavaliers and Golden State Warriors, the Detroit native danced with the panache of a veteran pro at halftime.

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Leap! National Dance Competition offers dancers of all skill levels an opportunity to showcase their talents in an event where the focus is on fun and competing is just a bonus!

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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!

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Dancer to Dancer
The School at Jacob's Pillow's contemporary program auditions (photo by Karli Cadel, courtesy Jacob's Pillow)

Summer intensive auditions can be nerve-racking. A panel of directors is watching your every move, and you're not even sure if you can be seen among the hundreds of other dancers in the room. We asked five summer intensive directors for their input on how dancers can make a positive impression—and even be remembered next year.

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Photo by Joe Toreno

The coolest place she's ever performed:

I'd have to say the Super Bowl. The field was so cool, and Katy Perry was right there. And there were so many eyes—definitely the most eyes I've ever performed for!

Something she's constantly working on:

My feet. I'm flat-footed, so I'm always hearing, 'Point your toes!' And I'm like, 'I am!'

Signature look:

My hair! That, and a pair of leggings with a T-shirt or tank top.

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Dancer to Dancer
Photo by Travis Kelley, courtesy Kathryn Morgan

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,

For a long time, I was the strongest dancer at my studio. But this year there's a new girl in my class who's very talented, and my teacher's attention has definitely shifted to her. I'm trying not to feel jealous or discouraged, but it seems like my whole dance world has changed. Help!


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Screenshot via YouTube

*suddenly feels the overpowering urge to purchase a million bottles of Pocari Sweat*

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Dance News
Mandy Moore (photo by Lee Cherry, courtesy Bloc Agency)

In the dance world, Mandy Moore has long been a go-to name, but in 2017, the success of her choreography for La La Land made the rest of the world stop and take notice. After whirlwind seasons as choreographer and producer on both "Dancing with the Stars" and "So You Think You Can Dance," she capped off the year with two Emmy Award nominations—and her first win. Dance Magazine caught up with her to find out how she's balancing all of her dance projects.

Read more at!

Dancer to Dancer
Martha Graham Dance Company member, Marzia Memoli (photo by Sean Martin, courtesy Martin)

Marzia Memoli may be the Martha Graham Dance Company's newest dancer, but her classical lines and easy grace are already turning heads. Originally from Palermo, Italy, Memoli started studying at age 16 at the Academy of Teatro Carcano in Milan. Later, she attended the Rudra Béjart School in Lausanne, Switzerland, before heading to NYC in 2016 to join MGDC. This month, she'll perform The Rite of Spring in the Martha Graham Studio Series in NYC, and tour with the company in Florida. Read on for the dirt.

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Screenshot via YouTube

#TeamTatum really knows how to build the suspense.

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