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!

 

GROOVALOO

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 dancemedia.com 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

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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!'


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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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Read more at dancemagzine.com!

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

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