Spamalot Brings Gags and Giggles to Broadway
Spamalot—the first Broadway show to sell Spam in its lobby—was one of the most anticipated openings on the Great White Way this season. The stage version of the 1975 film Monty Python and the Holy Grail, which is a spoof on the legend of King Arthur, debuted in NYC February 14 after a sold-out run in Chicago. Adding to the hype are the show’s stars: Tim Curry (The Rocky Horror Picture Show), David Hyde Pierce (“Frasier”) and Hank Azaria (“The Simpsons”).
With such a high-profile cast and a budget of over $11 million, how did first-time Broadway choreographer Casey Nicholaw land such a coveted gig? It helps that he’s passionate about the stage. “I grew up in musical theater and I love the craft,” he says. It also helps that famed Broadway choreographer Jerry Mitchell (whom Nicholaw had previously worked with) personally recommended him to Spamalot director Mike Nichols.
A full chorus performs the choreography that includes a mishmash of pop culture references, 42nd Street–style tap, and showgirl strutting. (Although the stars don’t dance much, Nicholaw was still responsible for their movement during musical numbers.) Spamalot called for choreography that fit the sketch-comedy feel of the production. “I’m proud when people laugh through the numbers. It means I did the job right,” explains Nicholaw.
There's a common misconception that a dancer's body has to be thin. But the truth is that talent knows no body type, and the number on the scale never determines an artist's capabilities. Here are some extraordinary dancers fighting the stereotype of what a dancer "should" look like.
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!
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.
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.
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!'
My hair! That, and a pair of leggings with a T-shirt or tank top.
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!
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!
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.