The talent pool for this year’s Cover Model Search was insane, making it nearly impossible for us to narrow it down to just three finalists. Here are a few of the applicants we loved.
(Photo by Propix)
Hometown: Phoenix, AZ
Dance studio: Innerlight Dance Center
Why we love her: Once we managed to take our eyes off Regan’s gorgeous feet, we noticed how perfectly she captured the intricacies of the classical music in her self-choreographed solo, “The Meadow.” Regan’s choreography and exquisite technique earned her third place at the 2013 Next Generation of Fine Arts Young Choreographers Competition. She’s planning to study photography and dance at the University of Arizona and is the author of a dance-themed Tumblr (“The Dance Blog”) with more than 10,000 followers.
(Photo by Martin Caprera, courtesy Greenwood Photography)
Hometown: Springfield, VA
Dance studio: Buffa’s Dance Studio
Why we love her: Emma has textbook-perfect facility, but she doesn’t rely on lines alone. In her self-choreographed solo, “Explosions,” she demonstrated acute awareness of her torso and upper body, in addition to her seemingly endless legs. Emma’s creativity won her the overall high score at NRG danceProject, The PULSE On Tour, Open Call and New York City Dance Alliance. She now works for NRG danceProject, assisting and teaching throughout the U.S. and Australia.
(Photo courtesy Hall of Fame Dance Challenge)
Hometown: Anaheim, CA
Dance studio: Mather Dance Company
Why we love her: In her lyrical solo, “Turning Page,” Simone danced with an infectious joy that was hard to ignore. That, combined with her long limbs and the fluidity of her movement, helped her become the highest-scoring teen soloist of 2013 at MOVE Productions. This summer, she plans to attend Project Launch Dance Festival at Northern California Dance Conservatory, and she dreams of pursuing a BFA at The Juilliard School.
(Photo courtesy Break The Floor Productions)
Hometown: Bedford Corners, NY
Dance studio: Westchester Dance Academy
Why we love her: In her lyrical solo, “My Love,” Logan glided effortlessly across the stage. But it was the moments of stillness, where she demonstrated her impeccable control, that truly commanded our attention. “My Love” earned Logan the high score at NYCDA Nationals and fourth place at The Dance Awards. She now attends Pace University on a scholarship from the New York City Dance Alliance Foundation.
(Photo courtesy American Dance Awards Productions)
Hometown: Cranston, RI
Dance studio: Atwood Performing Arts Center
Why we love her: Olivia’s fearless movement and power matched Christina Aguilera’s voice perfectly in her contemporary solo, “You Lost Me.” Her mature embodiment of heartbreak earned her StarQuest’s National Senior Miss title. Olivia currently studies dance at Pace University, where she’s also a member of Rhonda Miller’s Commercial Dance Company.
Harper Watters is a ballet dancer for today's generation. A social media maestro and a charismatic performer, the Houston Ballet soloist is equally at home in front of the camera hosting his hit YouTube series, "The Pre Show"; interacting with fans on his crazy-popular Instagram account; or showing off his beautiful classical technique onstage. It's a multifaceted identity that's proven to be invaluable to his career—and it's taking him to places he never even dreamed of.
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.
When we think of a dancer who's broken barriers, American Ballet Theatre principal Misty Copeland tends to be the name that comes to mind. And though Copeland has been a crucial advocate for equality in the world of ballet, Raven Wilkinson—a mentor of Copeland's—is considered one of the original pioneers of the movement.
In 1955, Wilkinson became the first African American to dance with the renowned Ballet Russe de Monte Carlo. Her fortitude in the face of bigotry and hate cemented her legacy. Now, with the release of the new children's book Trailblazer: The Story of Ballerina Raven Wilkinson, a new generation of dancers will be inspired by her tale of overcoming obstacles to achieve a dream.
The book details Wilkinson's life, from her experience as a young dancer training in Harlem, to her run-ins with the Ku Klux Klan while on tour with Ballet Russe, to her later ballet career in Europe. "There were times where my heart really hurt because of the situations I had to deal with," she says. "But I always had faith that I was made to be a dancer and that I was gonna dance."
Dance Spirit spoke with Wilkinson to discuss the new book and get her take on racial equality within the ballet world.
Postmodern pioneer Trisha Brown redefined how dance is seen and felt. A founding member of Judson Dance Theater, Brown frequently collaborated with other experimental artists like Yvonne Rainer, Merce Cunningham, Twyla Tharp, and Steve Paxton.
She embraced pedestrian movement, pairing everyday gesture with rhythm and fluidity. "It's liquid," says Wendy Perron, who danced with Brown in the '60s and '70s. "Like a river with many tributaries, water coming out of a faucet, or being on a raft and seeing the water move away in different directions." Brown also pushed beyond stages with choreography in fields, museums—even on the sides of buildings.
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.