There's something extra heartwarming about the bond between dancers and their doggies. A companion who'll cuddle with you while you stretch, or sit patiently while you're warming up at the barre? I mean, that's pretty special. These four dog and dancer relationships prove dogs really are a dancer's best friend.
So, Shaping Sound rounded out its 2015-2016 tour Monday night with one last stop in NYC. And we're already majorly bummed it's over. (Pleaseeee can we get another reality show or something in the works Hollywood?!)
Per usual, the show was INSANELY awesome. And although the plot and choreo was essentially the same as their last tour, it was certainly no less incredible seeing it again. The company's main men (Travis Wall, Nick Lazzarini, Teddy Forance and Kyle Robinson for those of you living under a rock) always promise jaw-dropping choreography, super raw emotion and almost physically impossible stunts—and they delivered.
(via Shaping Sound)
A few updates this year included new cast member "So You Think You Can Dance" alum and former cover star Ricky Ubeda, which we were not mad about at all. Ricky gave us one of our favorite moments of the whole show: a gorgeous, loving and emotional duet with Travis. Seriously, it was powerful and got the biggest applause of the night by far.
Another update had Mallauri Esquibel (another SYTYCD alum and former cover star) dancing the leading role usually played by Jaimie Goodwin. We have to say, she killed it. She was vulnerable, sultry, strong and #flawless in every single number.
And we loved seeing the rest of the cast (Chantel Aguirre! Channing Cooke! Kate Harpootlian! to name a few...) back in action, too. And clearly, so did the audience as the whole cast received a roaring standing ovation at the end of the night.
The coolest part? Watching the all the dancers have #allthefeels during the last number and bows as they came to terms with closing the curtain on their last show and a super successful tour. You could totally see how much they all love to dance, and more importantly, how much they all love to dance with each other. Awww.
And shoutout to the famous audience members we fan-girled out over. Oh heyyyyyy Robbie Fairchild and Tiler Peck, aka the cutest couple of all time, who just happened to be sitting a few rows over from us. Casual.
It's no secret we were pumped when we heard the official announcement: Ricky Ubeda is joining the cast of On the Town on Broadway. You may recall, we were so excited, we couldn't wait to see him in costume—so we got a little Photoshop-happy with the pictures from Ubeda's DS cover shoot...
LOL. (Original photo by Lucas Chilczuk for Dance Spirit)
Judging by Ubeda's Twitter, it seems like "America's Favorite Dancer" has fallen in love with life on Broadway. Plus, on Friday, Playbill released 43 glorious photos of the men of OTT at NYC's South Street Seaport, and Ricky looks right at home among these "hunky sailors." Here are a few of our favorites:
All photos by Monica Simoes for Playbill.
Looks kinda familiar, don't you think?
Not sure what's going on here, but we love it.
So perfect, right?! Click here to see the full gallery, and for even more Ricky-in-OTT action, check out this behind-the-scenes video from the shoot:
As if last night's Oscars didn't feature enough dance goodness (still obsessed with that swoon-worthy Justin Timberlake opener), "Good Morning America" gifted us with another fab show this morning—featuring a few of our fave dancers.
The performance on "GMA" was set to La La Land's catchy opening song "Another Day of Sun" and featured some fantastically old-Hollywood-esque choreo by Mandy Moore (she choreographed the film) and Al Blackstone.
Breaking news, Broadway babies! The Cats revival casting has finally been announced—and it's a fabulous who's who list of major dance celebs.
The London Cats revival (courtesy DKC/O&M)
Leading the way is the amazing Ricky Ubeda as Mr. Mistoffelees. The "So You Think You Can Dance" Season 11 winner is no Great White Way newbie: He made his official Broadway debut last year, when he joined the ensemble of On The Town. But it is his first time playing a major role—and showing off his singing chops solo!
The list also includes other On The Town alums: New York City Ballet soloist Georgina Pazcoguin as Victoria (aka the super graceful "white cat"), and Jess LeProtto (also of Newsies and "So You Think You Can Dance") as the mischievous Mungojerrie.
Other highlights? Shonica Gooden—fresh off her Hamilton run—will play Rumpleteazer; New York City Dance Alliance all-star Kolton Krouse will make his Broadway debut as Tumblebrutus; and fellow NYCDA kid Corey Snide, a Juilliard grad who was one of Billy Elliot's Billys, will play Coricopat.
One thing's for certain: This cast of A-list dancers + Andy Blankenbuehler's choreo is sure to = Broadway gold. The production officially opens July 31. Get your tickets now, and check out the full casting list here.
Ahhh you guys—it's really happening! Ricky Ubeda, aka America's Favorite Dancer, aka owner of the most ridiculous pair of legs this side of Svetlana Zakharova, is joining the cast of Broadway's On the Town next Friday, February 27th!
OK, yes: The OTT role was technically part of his prize as the winner of "So You Think You Can Dance." So this is not, in the strict sense of the word, news. But Broadway shows are a a fickle business; there was always a chance that the blessed event might not actually occur.
We did a little heel-click for joy when we heard that the date for Ubeda's Broadway debut had been set—especially since his cheek-pinchable brand of cuteness is just right for the old-school world of OTT. He was basically born to be a sailor, amirite? Or at least to wear sailor whites, as we saw during choreographer Josh Bergasse's OTT-inspired Broadway routine for Season 11's Top 20. (Just look at him being adorable there in the back row!)
Ubeda will perform in the show through April 26. Get your tickets now, people! And in the meantime, take a look at a few of the OTT-inspired shots we just happened to take at Ubeda's cover shoot. #Sorrynotsorry for the Photoshopped sailor hats.
Original photos by Lucas Chilczuk for Dance Spirit
Earlier this month, 170 standout high schoolers ventured to Miami to participate in National YoungArts Week. The group of YoungArts finalists—whittled down from roughly 11,000 applicants nationwide—included 21 dancers, and they were treated to master classes with artists like former New York City Ballet principal Phillip Neal (who's a YoungArts alum himself), Miami City Ballet director Lourdes Lopez and Montreal's RUBBERBANDance Group director Victor Quijada. Sounds pretty great, amirite?
Dance finalist Kaleb Sims from Jacksonville, FL (Pedro Portal, Courtesy YoungArts)
It gets better. Throughout the week, students are further adjudicated for a chance to win monetary awards (ranging from $1,000 to $10,000), and they're considered for nomination as 2015 U.S. Presidential Scholars in the Arts. Dance finalists are following in some pretty giant footsteps: Desmond Richardson, Ida Saki, American Ballet Theatre CEO Rachel Moore—even Ricky Ubeda!—were all YoungArts winners.
Hayden Hopkins at YoungArts Week in Miami (Pedro Portal, Courtesy YoungArts)
For those of us not in Miami, YoungArts posts all finalists' performances on their YouTube channel. Check out Sarah and Hayden's solos below, and then click here to watch the others. And to get details about applying for next year, visit youngarts.org.
And here's a special gift for making it all the way through this blog—Ricky Ubeda's performance from the 2014 National YoungArts Week in Miami: