Jayme Thornton

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!

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Gretchen Smith in rehearsals for The Most Incredible Thing (Paul Kolnik, courtesy New York City Ballet)

New York City Ballet soloist and resident choreographer Justin Peck is never not busy: This year alone, he's created works for San Francisco Ballet, Miami City Ballet and NYCB. But Peck's latest ballet for his home company, The Most Incredible Thing, is his biggest production yet. Based on the Hans Christian Andersen fairy tale, it features 50 dancers; a score by Bryce Dessner, of the band The National; and costumes and sets by popular artist Marcel Dzama. Dance Spirit caught up with NYCB corps de ballet member Gretchen Smith, a Most Incredible Thing cast member, to get the scoop on Peck's new work. —Olivia Manno

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Dance and photography go together like peanut butter and jelly: Each brings out some of the best elements in the other. We love a good studio portrait, demonstrating perfect placement, or a stunning performance photo that makes onstage magic feel up close and personal.

But we're also loving the new trend of dreamy, almost carefree dance photos. Think Insta-famous photographer Kenneth Edwards and his lovely images of ballerinas mid-pirouette, or floating down from a jump (btw, if you like his photos, you'll LOVE our September issue...).

So, who better to confirm that something in the dance world is officially cool than New York City Ballet? The marketing photos shot for the company's 2016–2017 season are rustic, elegant and simple. Legendary photographer Peter Lindbergh played with the natural lighting and stunning outdoor space of the location—a country house in upstate New York—to frame the dancers' relaxed movement in an equally natural environment.

It's a far cry from the severity and silhouettes of many Balanchine ballets the company is known for, but it's also beautiful and on-trend. You can view the whole slideshow here.

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When they're not dancing down the runway or modeling Dior, New York City Ballet members are apparently following their peers at American Ballet Theatre (who were recently featured in a Club Monaco shoot) and switching up their designer duds for (slightly) more affordable ones.

Behold, NYCB soloist Zachary Catazaro and apprentice Miriam Miller in a video for Max Mara:

Even though the video was obviously shot to showcase the clothes and not their dancing, the two still look lovely. Which company/brand combo would you like to see? Let us know in the comments!

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It's no secret that DS editors are a little (okay, a lot) obsessed with any sort of behind-the-scenes action, especially when they feature our favorite ballerinas. And if you feel the same way, then you're in for a treat—New York City Ballet soloist Megan LeCrone was just profiled on Y'all Collective, a blog dedicated to sharing the stories of creatives from the South whose careers, in one way or another, brought them to NYC.

LeCrone in the studio (photo by Michael George, via Y'all Collective)

New York-based photographer Michael George was lucky enough to spend the day with LeCrone, capturing everything from her morning routine, to her pre-class warmups, to her makeup process before the evening's performance.

LeCrone preps her hair for class (photo by Michael George, via Y'all Collective)

There's always something special about witnessing a dancer's particular rituals, and this series is no exception. LeCrone's carefully tailored schedule came from years of learning how to adapt to the demands of dancing professionally in a company. As dancers, we can all learn a little bit from these moments. That, and the pictures are stunning to look at! Check out the entire feature here.

 

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Last week, we all got a sneak peek at New York City Ballet's most recent fashion collaborations. This week, we have a chance to get even closer to the costumes created by top couture designers for the company's fall gala on October 30.

NYCB released a video going behind the scenes and into the costume workshop as these amazing creations come to life. Maybe this will give you some far-out fashion inspiration for the week!

 

Fairchild in rehearsal for the "Miss Turnstiles" number in On the Town (photo by Monica Simes, via Playbill)

Back in June, we shared the exciting news that New York City Ballet principal Megan Fairchild will play Ivy Smith in the upcoming Broadway revival of On the Town. If you're not familiar with the show, New Yorker Ivy Smith is chosen to represent the NYC Subway for a month as "Miss Turnstiles" (smh at odd 1940s customs...). Ivy's picture on the subway comes into play later, when the show's protagonists—three sailors on a day off from the Navy—embark on a quest to find her.

Recently, Broadway.com shared a rehearsal video of the "Miss Turnstiles" routine. Watch it once, and you'll know exactly why the NYCB principal was chosen for the role. Much like the rest of the show, this number is packed with difficult choreography. Everything from crisp petit allegro to some seriously intense lifts, from an epic menage to about a bazillion fouettés, choreographer Joshua Bergasse did not go easy on her. And quite frankly, we're thrilled—because watching one of our favorite ballerinas completely nail an action-packed Broadway number makes us feel happy inside.

Check it out!

On the Town officially opens October 16, but preview performances have already begun at Lyric Theatre on Broadway. For tickets, click here.

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